History

In 1960, two visionary real estate commercial contractors from Southern California embarked on a cross-country road trip with their families. During the course of their trips, they each grew increasingly dismayed at the limited choice of consistent, affordable lodging available to the average leisure traveler. Amid a growing trend toward grander motels with their necessarily higher prices, the two partners decided to offer something different: a motel without the amenities of other motels but one that charged substantially less than its competition.

William Becker and Paul Greene designed and developed a revolutionary lodging concept — offer a clean, comfortable, consistently executed motel experience at a reasonable price — that would revolutionize the lodging business in America. With $800,000 in cash and an iron will, they built and ultimately launched the first profitable bargain motel, starting with a rate of $6 per room, per night at any time of the year: Motel 6.

Free from the standard philosophy guiding other motel operators, the company experienced rapid expansion throughout the 1970s and early 1980s. Bolstered by the growing presence and acceptance of budget motels across the country, Motel 6 was acquired by an investment group led by Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts & Company (KKR).

After the acquisition by KKR, Motel 6 launched its first advertising campaign in the fall of 1986. Primarily supported by radio, Motel 6’s advertising campaign featured National Public Radio announcer Tom Bodett and the signature Motel 6 tag line, “We’ll leave the light on for you®.”

In 1990, the company became a subsidiary of French hotel company Accor S.A. Under Accor’s stewardship, the brand expanded into franchising, growing from approximately 500 locations to 1,100. Accor also launched Motel 6’s extended stay brand, Studio 6, in 1998.

The Blackstone Group completed its acquisition of the Motel 6 and Studio 6 brands in October 2012, and G6 Hospitality, the brands’ management company, was born. In 2015, G6 Hospitality was rated one of the top ten hospitality companies according to the Hotel Management  Top Hotel Companies rankings list, which evaluated over 260 hotel companies.

Today, the G6 Hospitality network consists of more than 1,400 locations in the U.S. and Canada.

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1962

The lights at the first Motel 6 come on in Santa Barbara, California, welcoming people and pets for just $6 per night.

1971

Motel 6 opens its largest location, Motel 6 Tropicana, amid the glittery lights of Las Vegas, Nevada.

1980

Motel 6 reaches 300 locations and introduces rentable color-TVs in guest rooms.

1986

Motel 6 begins its award-winning "We'll leave the light on for you®" advertising campaign featuring the voice of Tom Bodett.

1987

Motel 6 turns 25 years old.

1999

Motel 6 launches Studio 6 Extended Stay suites featuring fully-equipped kitchenettes designed for longer stays.

2000

Motel 6 goes international, opening its first location outside the U.S. in Burlington, Ontario, Canada.

2002

Motel 6th celebrates its 40th birthday at the first location in Santa Barbara, California.

2006

Motel 6 invests more than $6 million in properties to help rebuild New Orleans and Gulfport following Hurricane Katrina.

2009

Motel 6 introduces its first, newly constructed Phoenix prototype in Northlake, Texas, revolutionizing the economy lodging experience with energy-saving features and a sleek, modern design.

2010

Motel 6’s all new room design wins the 2010 Travel + Leisure Design Award for Best Large Hotel.

2011

Motel 6 opens its 1,100th location in Cleburne, Texas.

2012

Motel 6 turns 50 years old and celebrates 50 years of still saving you money.

2014

G6 Hospitality increases its network of properties to more than 1,200 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. Additionally, G6 Hospitality expands into Latin American markets introducing two new brands: Hotel 6 and Estudio 6.