Suzi MacDonald Yoder

Best Western International is set to expand its presence in Latin America to meet the growing demand in the region.

The move is part of the company’s plan to expand across Mexico, Central and South America, with 29 hotels under development with completion slated for 2014 and 2015.

With the expansion, the company expects to address the growing hospitality demand in Brazil caused by improving economies along with the forthcoming 2014 World Cup and 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The group plans to develop 30 new properties across the country in the next five years in collaboration with development partner Incortel, around 50% of which will be operated as BEST WESTERN PLUS properties.

The first of these hotels, the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pampulha Design Hotel in Belo Horizonte, is scheduled to open in March 2014.

Best Western international operations vice president Suzi Yoder said that Brazil still needs around 12,000 rooms to meet the growing demand created by the upcoming sporting events.

"We’re seeing a natural fit between the demands of developers and travellers in South America, and the modern, upscale amenities we offer with our BEST WESTERN PLUS and BEST WESTERN PREMIER hotel types," Yoder added.

Best Western plans to open the BEST WESTERN PLUS Mocawa Hotel in Colombia, which will be its third property in the region, by late December, and it plans to add between two and four new construction projects annually until 2019.

The brand will also expand its presence in areas such as Chile, where it currently operates five hotels, and in Peru, where it plans to open four hotels by the end of 2014.

Image: Best Western international operations vice president Suzi Yoder. Photo courtesy of Best Western International, Inc.