With 30 brands in over 130 countries and literally thousands of hotels, Marriott is the largest hotel chain in the entire world. Its brands include everything from mid-range accommodation like Marriott Hotels to the ultra-luxurious Ritz-Carlton hotels and resorts. But while this diversity is certainly impressive, it also means that the brand’s portfolio is pretty inconsistent in quality. Some Marriott brand hotels look like they could double as the Bates Motel and others are like Mary Poppins — practically perfect in every way. Here is every single Marriott Brand, ranked from “avoid at all cost” to “worth spending your life savings on.”
30. SpringHill Suites Founded: 1997 Brand’s best hotel: SpringHill Suites Prescott in Arizona Bottom line: SpringHill Suites have bigger rooms than the average Marriott hotel and, sometimes, they even come with a separate workspace. But they're also as bland as they come, lacking even a hint of personality. The brand doesn't offer any interesting perks unless you’re part of the Marriott Bonvoy Rewards Program and want to collect points. Their design usually makes cityscapes uglier rather than more beautiful.
29. TownePlace Suites Founded: 1997 Brand’s best hotel: TownePlace Suites Toronto Northeast/Markham in Canada Bottom line: TownePlace Suites goes one step further than SpringHill, offering one or two-bedroom units as well as studios. The suites come with small kitchenettes so people can cook their own meals and economize. Big closets are also a feature meant to attract long-term guests. We do appreciate the fact that people can cook and organize their clothes while on business or personal trips that are longer than usual. However, if you want “homely,” you’re better off with an Airbnb. Like SpringHill, these hotels tend to be pretty ugly on the outside. The inside isn’t anything extraordinary either.
28. Residence Inn Founded: 1975 Brand’s best hotel: Residence Inn Santa Barbara Goleta in California Bottom line: This is your run-of-the-mill budget hotel that tends to smell musty. You’ll want to wear sandals inside the room to avoid ever coming into contact with carpets that look like they haven’t been properly cleaned since the 1970s. That said, there are some Residence Inns — like the Santa Barbara Goleta and the Amsterdam Houthavens — that manage to go against the stereotype with pretty designs and very pleasant common spaces. Just don’t count on this being the norm.
27. Moxy Hotels Founded: 2014 Brand’s best hotel: Moxy NYC East Village in New York Bottom line: Moxy Hotels look and feel as if a clueless group of corporate boomers decided to cash in on millennials' money. The brand says it doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it certainly tries way too hard to be cool. Its designs consist of an attack of neon lights, irreverent posters that may include a censored curse word (eyeroll) and pillows that say things like “hustle” and "pizza is my spirit animal" that might as well simply read “basic.” Someone needs to tell Moxy that if you have to scream so loudly that you’re cool, you’re failing at it. To be fair, in terms of cleanliness and the state of the rooms, it isn’t too bad. But its branding is so annoying that we’re really hoping the company doesn’t survive too long.
26. Courtyard by Marriott Founded: 1983 Brand’s best hotel: Courtyard Bali Seminyak Resort in Indonesia Bottom line: As one of Marriott’s largest brands, you’ll find a courtyard in all corners of the world. What’s cool about this brand is that it services smaller towns and locations that don’t have many options, but it's also in touristy places. The downfall of Courtyard is that there is little consistency from one property to another. Some properties, like the Bali Seminyak Resort, offer beauty and comfort at good prices. Others, especially the airport properties, look like you’ll want to check under the bed to make sure you don’t find a hidden body.
25. Four Points by Sheraton Founded: 1995 Brand’s best hotel: Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands in Australia Bottom line: Once upon a time, Four Points by Sheraton was a direct competitor of Courtyard by Marriott. Then, Marriott gobbled up SPG and acquired Four Points for its portfolio. We don’t really have much to add about Four Points that we haven’t already said about Courtyard. Within North America, Four Points is like Forrest Gump’s box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get. In other continents, particularly Asia, the brand steps up its game for consistently decent properties.
24. Fairfield Inn & Suites Founded: 1987 Brand’s best hotel: Fairfield Inn & Suites Clearwater Beach in Florida Bottom line: Fairfield Inn & Suites is very similar to Courtyard and Four Points, providing suites that suit big groups at reasonable prices. All properties also offer complimentary hot breakfast. The reason Fairfield manages to rank a bit higher than the other two suite brands is because it has the one thing they lack: consistency. You can pretty much know what you're going to get at a Fairfield, since they all basically look the same. On the flip side, the properties are certainly nothing to write home about and Marriott's insistence in using horrid beige and orange-brown for exteriors really does not do the brands any favors.
23. Marriott Vacation Club Founded: 1984 Brand’s best hotel: Marriott Vacation Club at Los Sueños in Costa Rica Bottom line: Maybe timeshares are actually a good idea. But all the aggressive sellers who promise free tickets to Disney in exchange for sitting through a two-hour presentation make us distrust them. No, we don't think Marriott is trying to scam its Vacation Club members or "owners," as it calls them. We just aren't sure if paying over $22,000 for a membership is worth it.
22. Element Founded: 2006 Brand’s best hotel: Element Sedona in Arizona Bottom line: We want to like Element, we really do. From the beginning, this brand was meant to be focused on sustainability and green travel. It provides travelers with eco-minded and wellness programs like bike-sharing and yoga classes — and it does so at a reasonable price! But we have to be honest and say that, while we love Element's enthusiasm, the hotels are just so aesthetically unappealing. For example, we're torn between being happy to have an affordable accommodation option in Sedona and having the city's famous red rocks be tarnished by the beige-and-green block that defines all Element hotels. If you don't care what a hotel looks like on the outside and don't plan on spending too much time in the room, Element certainly is a good way to travel on a budget and with a lower footprint.
21. Marriott Executive Apartments Founded: 1997 Brand’s best hotel: Mayfair Bangkok - Marriott Executive Apartments in Thailand Bottom line: As the name of the brand suggests, these hotels are made specifically with international business travelers in mind. All Marriott Executive Apartment properties are outside of North America. The idea is to provide business travelers with an experience that is unique to each location yet held to the same high standard. The reason this brand doesn't rank higher is not that it lacks anything per se but because it's not very practical for individual travelers. Unless you're looking for a place with meeting spaces, catered food and other business-specific needs, a short-term apartment rental will give you a homier feel and more comfort.
20. Sheraton Founded: 1937 Brand’s best hotel: Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort in Dubai, U.A.E. Bottom line: Sheraton was once a direct competitor of Marriott, until the latter merged with SPG. Though one of the oldest and most well known brands in the portfolio, Sheraton doesn't really stand out from the competition in any way. Some of its properties are great and offer a comfortable, upscale stay. But if you were blindfolded and taken into a Sheraton, you wouldn't be able to guess the brand of your hotel if your life depended on it. For people who don't mind generic hotels, there isn't anything terribly wrong with this brand.
19. Aloft Hotels Founded: 2005 Brand’s best hotel: Aloft Montevideo Hotel in Uruguay Bottom line: Aloft is a subsidiary of W, a Marriott brand that we will discuss in a little bit. The branding of Aloft doesn't always work, with its forcefully modern architecture and neon lights sometimes making it look like it could be the setting of "Blade Runner." But sometimes the hotel manages to do it right, bringing some funkiness to its lobbies and rooms without being too desperate about it. In any case, we give it points for trying to avoid being boring and generic without overdoing it.
18. Marriott Hotels Founded: 1927 Brand’s best hotel: Marriott Marquis Houston in Texas Bottom line: At almost 100 years old, this was the brand that started it all. As can be expected from someone so senior, the brand changes its mind from property to property. This means that there is very little consistency. Some Marriott Hotels inspire shoulder shrugs while others are surprisingly innovative and fun. The Marriott Marquis Houston, for example, has an unusual pool that consists of a lazy river in the shape of Texas. We love a hotel that isn't afraid to go big on frivolity.
17. AC Hotels Founded: 1998 Brand’s best hotel: AC Hotel Barcelona Forum in Spain Bottom line: Originating in Spain, AC Hotels has kept a distinctly European style as its expanded around the world. While, sometimes, we don't want to be in Thailand at a hotel that feels like it could very well be in Madrid, we certainly get the European appeal. Plus, the AC Hotels interiors tend to be stylish and fun, and they're also pretty affordable for the quality they offer.
16. Delta Hotels Founded: 1962 Brand’s best hotel: Delta Hotels Shanghai Baoshan in China Bottom line: Like Protea Hotels, Delta Hotels was independent until Marriott acquired it in 2015. The brand originated in Canada and primarily operates in North America, though it has expanded to other continents as well. Delta Hotels are decidedly upscale, making the brand popular with business travelers who want somewhere comfortable and beautiful to rest their heads. Unlike some of the other brands on this list, Delta tends to place emphasis on the aesthetic, with hotels beautifying their locations.
15. Design Hotels Founded: 1993 Brand’s best hotel: Mira Moon Hong Kong Bottom line: As its name suggests, the Design Hotels brand is all about designing an aesthetically pleasing experience. Unlike other Marriott brands that are plagued by stale rooms and monotony, Design Hotels are all completely unique. Some are even situated in repurposed historical buildings. We like Design Hotels for their boutique-like feeling and commend the creativity and thoughtfulness that goes into their interior design. Each hotel also tries to offer location-specific experiences that are usually tied to local culture.
14. Renaissance Hotels Founded: 1981 Brand’s best hotel: Renaissance Sharm El Sheikh Golden View Beach Resort in Egypt
Bottom line: Renaissance Hotels differentiates itself from Marriott Hotels and other Marriott brands by embracing the uniqueness of each property. The brand emphasizes local experiences. Hotels have a "Navigator" whose entire job is to help guests go beyond the beaten path and visit places other tourists don't know about. We applaud this desire to be different. It can be nauseating to see the same generic-style hotel in every city you visit. The brand is also reasonably priced.
13. W Hotels Founded: 1998 Brand’s best hotel: W Koh Samui in Thailand Bottom line: W is another Marriott brand that caters specifically towards a younger crowd. But unlike Moxy or W's own subsidiary brand, Aloft, this is for young people who have the money to pay for an upscale experience. W Hotels around the world have an emphasis on night life, with local DJs coming in to play sets at bars and lounges. The brand even holds an annual music festival called Wake Up Call and is known to put on week-long parties and events. Basically, W is what Fyre festival promised but couldn't deliver. If you want the hostel backpacker experience without the dinginess, W provides. Its designs are unique and can be quite beautiful, even if they sometimes miss the mark of creativity and pass on to tacky. Some properties, like W Koh Samui, are picture-perfect hotels.
12. Homes & Villas by Marriott International Founded: 2018 Brand’s best hotel: Romantic villa in St. Lucia Bottom line: One of Marriott's youngest brands, Homes & Villas was a direct response to the threat of Airbnb. Is it worth looking into the chain's villas as opposed to the competitor that inspired them? It depends. The properties Marriott offers tend to be more exclusive and luxurious, so if you're hoping to find a local home at a bargain price, Airbnb might be a better option. However, Marriott does inspect properties to make sure they're legitimate and that they meet certain standards, so you can sleep better at night knowing you won't get scammed.
11. Tribute Portfolio Founded: 2015 Brand’s best hotel: Apollo Hotel Amsterdam, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel in The Netherlands Bottom line: The Tribute Portfolio is everything that Moxy Hotels tried and failed to be. It is a collection of hotels that used to be independent and thus have a distinct personality without trying too hard. Because of each hotel's independent origin, you won't find much consistency across properties. But you will find what feels like a boutique hotel you can get Marriott Rewards points at. Some of the hotels in the collection, like the Apollo Hotel Amsterdam, are truly awesome.
10. Gaylord Hotels Founded: 1977 Brand’s best hotel: Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Tennessee Bottom line: Look, Gaylord Hotels are undeniably awesome. They are basically a mix between a conference hall, a small theme park and a hotel. This can be useful, especially for conventions that want to provide attendees with everything they could possibly need without ever leaving the hotel. That being said, we don't see the point of flying somewhere just to stay at your hotel. If for some reason, you can't spend much time exploring the city you're in but don't want to be bored, then this is a perfect option. Otherwise, we don't know if it's worth paying the price for theme park entertainment when you'll be out and about getting to know what's outside of the hotel's gigantic premises.
9. Protea Hotels Founded: 1984 Brand’s best hotel: Protea Hotel Kruger Gate in South Africa Bottom line: This brand used to be independent until it was acquired by Marriott in 2014. What sets it apart from other brands is that it only operates in Africa. The style, architecture and quality of each hotel vary, but Protea has some incredible offerings that place it within the top half of this list. You can, for example, book a safari lodge right outside of South Africa's famous Kruger National Park or book a beach boutique in Zanzibar.
8. JW Marriott Founded: 1984 Brand’s best hotel: JW Marriott Grosvenor House London in England Bottom line: Named after the company's founder, John Willard Marriott, this brand has a strong global presence. You'll find properties in most major cities in the world as well as popular vacation destinations and smaller cities. Both business and leisure travelers stay at these upscale hotels, which provide great service, clean rooms, good food and other perks without being as expensive as other Marriott brands. For convenience, service and a universal quality standard, this is a great brand. Hotels tend to stay away from ugly block buildings, which, of course, we love.
7. Autograph Collection Founded: 2010 Brand’s best hotel: Powerscourt Hotel, Autograph Collection in Ireland Bottom line: Like Tribute Portfolio, the Autograph Collection is made up of boutique hotels that operate in a mostly independent way. What brings them together is an emphasis on using local architecture and design as well as catering to local experiences. Basically, they help you feel like you're actually visiting the place you're visiting. Hey, not all hotels on this list can say that!
6. Le Méridien Founded: 1972 Brand’s best hotel: Le Méridien Nice in France Bottom line: If you don't want a cookie-cutter Marriott hotel but also find that brands like W are too over-the-top in their flashy design, Le Méridien provides a nice middle ground. This brand was born in Paris and has kept the French capital's simple chicness in its style. Rooms are tastefully decorated and services are decidedly upscale. But the best part about this brand is that it does it at relatively affordable prices.
5. Edition Founded: 2010 Brand’s best hotel: Miami Beach Edition in Florida Bottom line: If you want social media-worthy pictures or simply love staying in beautiful places, Edition Hotels provide airy, light, spacious designs that we absolutely love. The properties really care about aesthetics, putting every detail together with extra carefulness. But the luxury brand is decidedly modern, going more for minimalistic elegance than the opulence of more established brands like the Ritz-Carlton. If there is anything we'd criticize about Edition properties, it's that the design doesn't always translate to the rooms. Sure, you won't spend much time in them, but we'd love to see more congruency between the intricately designed common spaces and the generic rooms.
4. Westin Founded: 1930 Brand’s best hotel: The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club in the Dominican Republic Bottom line: Wellness and health are the focus of Westin Hotels. You'll find locally sourced food at many properties, workout studios that offer classes and even a concierge that will help you plan your jogging routes in a new city. You can also rent workout gear so you don't have to use precious travel space on running shoes and workout clothes. The brand is also famous for its Westin Heavenly Bedding, which Delta Air Lines uses in first class. Whether you're traveling for business or for pleasure, if mental and physical health is your priority, Westin hotels can help you prioritize them. Plus, its signature scent smells so good!
3. The Luxury Collection Founded: 1992 Brand’s best hotel: Gritti Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Venice in Italy Bottom line: If you don't like big names and would rather stay at boutique hotels, the Luxury Collection is the upscale Marriott brand for you. Unlike Edition hotels, the collection is unabashedly luxurious, including properties like a historic palace on Venice's Grand Canal and beach villas in Seychelles. Expect five-star treatment as well as five-star prices that are actually worth it.
2. The Ritz-Carlton Founded: 1983 Brand’s best hotel: Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Puerto Rico Bottom line: We don't need to introduce the Ritz-Carlton, one of the most famous luxury hotel brands in the entire world. Many people don't even know the brand is now part of Marriott and see it as completely independent. Each of the brand's luxurious properties offer great locations, resort features and amazing food. Designs straddle between traditional and modern, but the hotels are never allowed to feel worn or out-of-touch. If you want an exclusive experience within the exclusiveness of the brand, stay at a Ritz-Carlton Reserve. These properties are all in secluded locations, are decidedly more expensive and don't offer loyalty rewards points because collecting travel points is for peasants.
1. St. Regis Founded: 1904 Brand’s best hotel: The St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort Bottom line: St. Regis has been around for almost 120 years and is considered la crème de la crème of Marriott's brands. If you've ever been to a St. Regis, you're either still paying off the honeymoon loans or you've never looked at a price tag in your entire life. You can expect perks like daily complimentary glasses of champagne, free childcare and absolutely astonishing properties. In terms of Marriott, it doesn't get better than this brand — the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort in Miami, Florida, was even voted one of the best hotels in the U.S.