US-based Marriott International has signed an exclusive development agreement with Eastern Crown Hotels Group to launch the FairfieldSM by Marriott brand in China.

Under the deal, Marriott and Eastern Crown will open 140 hotels in various locations across the country over five years, with 100 hotels expected to be open by 2021.

As part of Marriott’s expansion strategy into China’s midscale hotel segment, the hotels will increase the group’s presence across the country by more than twofold.

Each of the new Fairfield hotels will have 100-150 rooms.

Marriott International Asia Pacific president and managing director Craig Smith said: "China is the fastest growing market in Asia for us.

"The rising disposable incomes of the middle class and development of the consumption-led economy is driving an increased demand for higher quality mid-range accommodation.

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"Fairfield will focus on young consumers and business travellers looking for a comfortable and productive stay at a great value."

Marriott International owns more than 80 hotels in 25 cities in China. Fairfield is said to be its second largest distributed brand with more than 750 hotels worldwide.

"Fairfield currently has the largest development pipeline within Marriott International, positioning the brand as the fastest growing in the portfolio."

Marriott vice president and Fairfield global brand manager Shruti Buckley said: "Fairfield has quickly gained popularity in Asia since its introduction into the region two years ago. Guests enjoy the value of this contemporary brand, its intuitive design and great service culture that resonates so well in this part of the world.

"These key indicators are true differentiators that will meet and serve the needs of China’s next generation travellers.

"Due to the fast growing global demand for quality mid-tier hotels, Fairfield currently has the largest development pipeline within Marriott International, positioning the brand as the fastest growing in the portfolio.

"This partnership with Eastern Crown is proof of the brand’s strong proposition and benefit to our owners."

Last month, Marriott Hotel opened Zhuhai Marriott Hotel in Zhuhai, China under a long-term management agreement with ZhuHai New Dragon Hotel.

Image: Eastern Crown Hotels Group president and CEO Cheng Xinhua (left) with Marriott International Asia Pacific executive vice president for hotel development Paul Foskey. Photo: courtesy of Marriott International, Inc / PR Newswire