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Special Project

Special Project
From the 11th Annual Shorty Awards

Chef’s Cut: Dynamic Data Driven Dinners

Finalist in Location-Based Experience


Marriott International's real-time social media command center, M Live, uses cutting-edge geo-fencing technology to identify trends shared publicly by guests on Instagram, Twitter, and Weibo across all 6,900+ of its hotel locations in 130 countries and territories around the world. It gathers a wealth of 24/7 insights which are tapped to create elevated on-property experiences for guests and Marriott Bonvoy loyalty members. The objective is to drive engagement and deliver on travelers' expectations. M Live surfaced the social sharing trend of Chef's Cut. The trend exposes dynamic shifts transforming the food scene that guests are posting on social media, including their innate desire to be wowed and surprised by the kitchen when ordering a meal. Marriott Hotels and the Food+Beverage team quickly actioned against the social media discovery by developing a brand-new mystery menu item at select properties worldwide. With Chef's Cut, foodies traded 'choice' for 'chance,' and Marriott chefs serve up surprise "trust me" menu options and blind tastings. The real-time concept strives to deliver a unique culinary experience in a socially connected 'always on' world, where surprises are few and far between, to enhance the customer experience.

Strategy and Execution

Marriott's geo-fencing technology and unparalleled access to insights, through data-driven social-listening, puts guests in the driver's seat and allows Marriott to make decisions based on guests' interests and trending social posts. In close partnership with the M Live social media command center, the Marriott Hotels brand, Marriott Food+Beverage, and hotel properties around the globe, Marriott created an engaging culinary program that focuses on personalizing and elevating experiences with the brand in a meaningful way to ultimately engender loyalty and boost brand reputation. Through this real-time collaboration, the teams worked to create unexpected and indelible culinary experiences for guests by leveraging the insights from geo-fencing technology and social trends.

M Live combed through public social media shares to identify customer-centric emerging themes that redefine what guests want and desire while traveling. By analyzing phrases and hashtags posted and shared publicly on social by guests, Marriott identified the following items trending year over year (YOY):

Based on these real-time findings, M Live zeroed in on the innovative concept of "Chef's Cut" and quickly developed a plan to bring it to life in meaningful and memorable ways for guests at scale through a proof of concept. Marriott partnered with its chefs and hotels in Bangkok, Istanbul, Cape Town, Grand Cayman, Charlotte, and Irvine. At each of these properties, over a two-week period, the executive chef created exciting culinary adventures by developing mystery menu items inspired from their world travels, their childhood experiences, and locally sourced ingredients. Guest were invited to select "Chef's Cut" as a menu option to take them on a surprising culinary journey for the evening. Guests allowed the dining experience to be fully curated through the chef's eyes and expertise. In a world where online reviews regularly remove any element of surprise, "Chef's Cut" elevates the dining experience to the unexpected.

The food, coupled with the properties' ambiance and design, created inherently social shareable moments for guests. Hotels, such as the Charlotte Marriott City Center, integrated technology even further into marketing efforts by leveraging in-room Alexa devices to invite guests to partake in the "Chef's Cut" menu offering.

In addition, 15 dining packages launched on Marriott International's loyalty program travel experiences site, Marriott Bonvoy Moments. It offered members the chance to redeem points for a "Chef's Cut" dinner package. These packages were curated to showcase custom menus developed by Partner Chefs, including Michelin-star Chef Michael Mina, highlighting Chef's Cut. These Marriott Bonvoy "Chef Cut" dinners took place on two continents with locations in the cities of Shenzen, San Francisco, Beijing, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

The strategy was dedicated to generating measurable objectives including:


Marriott successfully achieved its objectives to enhance the customer experience through the Chef's Cut global activations and Marriott Bonvoy Moments Chef's Cut packages. The team seized the opportunity to be a driver of change in the culinary space by delivering to consumers what they craved on social media.

Marriott Bonvoy Moments:

Chef's Cut Global Activations:

As a result of the global Chef's Cut activations the Marriott Hotels brand is now considering implementing similar Chef's Cut activations at our properties worldwide.


Video for Chef’s Cut: Dynamic Data Driven Dinners

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Marriott International

Entry Credits