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Communal Rooms at the Marriott

You soon will have the option to book a room with strangers

Christian Velez, Contributor

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Last September Marriott International and Starwood Hotels and Resorts merged into one company. The merger left the new Marriott with 30 brands and more than 5,700 hotels in 110 countries, making Marriott the largest hotel company in the world. Well now, the largest hotel company in world is making headlines, this time for its plans to introduce communal rooms.

When you think of communal or shared rooms, you might think hostel. A hostel is a low budget, traveling option. When you’re staying at a hostel you basically book a bed for the night, not a room. The bed may be in a room with four other travelers, or in a room with up to twenty travelers. Luckily, Marriott’s communal rooms will be much different and more luxurious than hostels.

The company’s Element brand, a development which caters to longer stay travelers, is leading the concept. Element’s communal room will feature a block of three to four private rooms, each with a private bathroom. The idea is that the bedrooms will surround a common living area and kitchen. If you’re the type of traveler who loves meeting new people, this could be a great way to do so.

On the Hotel Development page on Marriott.com it reads, “Marriott was the first to offer Apple Pay, and launch mobile check-in across our full portfolio. Starwood introduced the iconic Heavenly Bed, and keyless entry. Our combined focus on innovation continues to transform the industry and keep us ahead of the competition.”  So, it is no surprise that Marriott is in the frontlines of this new concept.

Could this be Marriott’s answer to travel trends like Airbnb? Airbnb is a community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book rooms or bigger spaces. “Whether it’s a house, a cabin in the woods, or even just a couch for the night, Airbnb connects people to unique travel experiences, at any price point, in more than 34,000 cities and 191 countries,” according to their website.

In an Today.com article titled ‘Shared spaces: Marriott is reportedly testing out communal rooms’, Julie Pennell writes, “This new feature is similar to other travel trends that cater to those who want to part of the sharing economy. For example, Lyft and Uber both offer carpooling-with-stranger options; EatWith lets you eat dinner with people you’ve never met; and sites like AirBnB give you the keys to someone else’s house.”

With Airbnb you get to meet strangers, and interact with new people. These communal rooms could simply be Marriott’s way of initiating a sense of community. When traveling, people like to meet new people and this could be an easier way to start socializing.

Communal rooms will be ideal for business trips and group trips.  It is also perfect for guests who are traveling alone who seek a sense of community. The rooms will be aiming to meet all group needs. The space will allow guests in the surrounding rooms to mix, socialize, dine together, or even work on projects. Reports have not given any dates for the opening of these communal rooms, but we do know they are coming soon.

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Communal Rooms at the Marriott