Hilton Hotels chief executive Stephen Bollenbach has set his sights on more than doubling the company's European portfolio within four years and is seeking a partner in China to add about 100 inns.
The company aims to have 450 hotels in Europe by 2010, up from the current figure of around 180.
Bollenbach intends to continue the company's move away from hotel ownership to management contracts and foresees "special opportunities" for expansion in western Europe and less-developed countries such as India and China.
He is also keen to secure a partner to expand in China, to help develop more than 100 properties within the next five years.
"This will be a huge expansion opportunity," he said. "It's very important to be big in the hotel business. That's what allows us to provide things our guests really, really value, such as worldwide reservations systems."
US-based Hilton Hotels bought Hilton Group in February, reuniting the companies for the first time since 1966. The company now has about 3,000 hotels in 80 countries.
By Emily Manson