J.W. “Bill” Marriott at the Canadian Hotel Investment Conference

The legendary Bill Marriott of Marriott International was the keynote speaker yesterday at the 19th annual Canadian Hotel Investment Conference (CHIC). Over 500 delegates from across the country took part in the event in downtownToronto to gain insight into the trends that will affect investments in hotels in the coming year. Mr. Marriott was interviewed by his daughter Debbie Harrison about his storied career, the principles of business success and future plans.

“We have a long association with this beautiful country. I had my honeymoon in Banff,” said Mr. Marriott who began with 365 rooms in 1957 and will have expanded to a million rooms open or under development by the end of this year. Mr. Marriott described building the company from a root beer stand to a global hospitality company. “At the heart of the matter is take good care of your people and listen to them, encourage them to talk, include them and make them part of the program. That’s been our guiding principle for almost 88 years now.”