2021 was a year full of milestones for Sonesta. We experienced exponential growth, welcomed new brands and destinations, grew our team to nearly 10,000 employees, developed our leadership team, and met so many new guests and partners along the way. We are thankful for all who have been part of our journey so far!
It was hard to choose just five top milestones from 2021, but we are particularly #sonestaproud of the below.
After breaking the news at the end of 2020, we announced the completion of the acquisition of RLH Corporation in March 2021. As a result, Sonesta became one of the largest hotel companies globally with approximately 1,200 locations, more than 100,000 guest rooms, and a diversified portfolio of 15 brands across multiple market segments.
In March 2021, 88 hotels joined our global portfolio of destinations, further adding to Sonesta’s recent expansion, which saw a 350% increase in hotels over the prior six months. Among the new destinations were Royal Sonesta Kauai Lihue and Sonesta Select Boca Raton.
At the end of June, we celebrated the grand opening of our new Shared Services Office in Orlando, Florida. The new 18,000 square foot office space, which overlooks Lake Eola, houses approximately 100 new Orlando-based employees and continues to be integral to Sonesta’s growth.
As we continued to grow, we were excited to announce the official launch of Sonesta Franchising, our expanded global hotel franchising organization. The debut of Sonesta Franchising in the U.S. includes our established Sonesta Hotels & Resorts and Sonesta ES Suites brands, along with Sonesta Select and Sonesta Simply Suites brands, which were introduced in 2020.
In response to the ongoing global pandemic, and in an effort to keep our guests and staff safe and healthy, Sonesta was proud to become the first large hotel company to earn the Sharecare Health Security VERIFIED designation. Each of Sonesta’s North American managed properties is part of a growing global network of Sharecare Health Security VEIRFIED hotels, resorts, restaurants, and other hospitality businesses.
We are wishing you all a Happy New Year and look forward to all that 2022 will bring!