Hotel room rates have risen in the last year but they are still down 10 percent from before the 2008 economic downturn, Arne Sorenson, president of Marriott International, told CNBC Thursday.
"We're still building. Obviously you don't turn around overnight," he said. "There's still some distance before we get back to the levels we were in 2007 but we can see it in sight."
The Marriott executive said that at their worst, in 2008 and 2009, revenue per available room fell 25 percent, beyond the loss after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in New York and Washington.
Now, however, he sees business and leisure travel increasing at all Marriott's brands, including its luxury Ritz-Carlton and its Courtyard motels for business travelers.