Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc. ("Host") is the nation's premier owner of real estate lodging, owning or holding a controlling interest in high quality lodging assets in prime urban, airport and resort/convention locations throughout the United States as well as in Canada, Mexico, Chile, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain and Poland.
Host has evolved considerably in terms of corporate structure as well as the nature and quality of its real estate holdings. Host Marriott Corporation (as Host formerly was known) was formed in October 1993 when Marriott Corporation split its operations into two separate and distinct companies. Marriott Corporation became Host Marriott Corporation, which retained ownership of 24 full service hotels, 102 limited service hotels, 14 senior living communities and the Host Marriott Operating Group, an entity that provided food, beverage and merchandise in airports and toll roads. The split also produced a separate company, Marriott International, Inc., which was formed to manage and operate various brands of Marriott hotels.
In 1994, Host began to implement its strategy to specialize in the ownership of full service hotels as it sold its senior living communities and 26 Fairfield Inns from its limited service hotel portfolio. That same year, the company acquired 15 full service hotels.
Over the next several years, Host continued to acquire full service hotels while it moved away from the limited service and food and beverage operations. In December 1995, Host, through a special dividend, spun off the Host Marriott Operating Group as a separate company called Host Marriott Services. In 1998, Host launched a brand diversification strategy by acquiring luxury and upper upscale hotels that included brand names such as Four Seasons, Ritz-Carlton and Hyatt.
In January 1999, Host became a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). Under then-existing REIT laws, Host was required to lease its properties to unaffiliated third parties. Consequently, Host leased its properties to Crestline Capital Corporation, which Host had spun off for this purpose through a special dividend in December 1998.
Over the next several years, Host continued to acquire luxury hotels while selectively disposing of non-core assets. In 2001, under the REIT Modernization Act, Host gained the ability to lease its hotels to wholly-owned subsidiaries. As a result, Host purchased the Crestline Capital Corporation subsidiaries that owned the lease rights to Host's properties. This transaction simplified the company's structure, allowed Host to better control returns from its full service hotels, and enabled it to implement a superior asset management program.
In November 2005, Host announced the acquisition of a portfolio of hotels from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. under brand names including Westin, Sheraton, W, St. Regis and The Luxury Collection. In conjunction with the Starwood transaction, on April 19, 2006, the company changed its name from Host Marriott Corporation to Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc. to reflect its enhanced brand diversity.
Host's growth and accomplishments have resulted from its disciplined approach to acquiring luxury and upscale hotels in difficult to replace locations. This approach has allowed Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc. to become the nation's premier owner of lodging real estate and will remain the foundation of the company's efforts to continue to upgrade and diversify its real estate portfolio.