As of 1963, it was the largest hotel chain in the industry, due to 699 member properties. The year 1966 witnessed a number of major changes when the organization's headquarters moved from Long Beach, California to Phoenix, Arizona, with the aim of further expanding the chain. The expansion entailed establishment of the new reservation center, offering free service for travel agents, vacationers, and business travelers. Other major changes included expanding to the Caribbean, the Pacific, and into Europe, and increasing membership standards.
Sales offices were opened in Seattle, Phoenix, Montreal, and Washington D.C. In 1974, the word "motel" was eliminated from the company's name, marking the new stage of its development. Foreign expansion has resulted in agreements with 410 properties of Australia and New Zealand.
In 1977, the Best Western Headquarters complex was constructed in northeast Phoenix, which contributed significantly to the company's status of the world's largest lodging chain. In the early 1980s, agreements were signed, bringing numerous properties of France, Denmark, Finland, Spain, Switzerland, and Sweden into the chain. By this time, 900 international affiliates of the company comprised 34% of its total membership.
In September 1988, the chain launched the Gold Crown Club International Program for frequent travelers, which reported nearly 200,000 members within a year. In 1998, Best Western chain adopted a new logo and identity.
As Best Western doesn't have franchises, the chain is operated as a non-profit association, with each hotel owned and operated independently.
Best Western hotels can be found in nearly every country of the world, including the original hotel in Phoenix. The company charges a rate which is based on initial cost, in addition to a fee for each room. Each hotel has a list of standards, compiled and published by Best Western International. Despite the fact that all hotels act as members of Western Hotels association, they are allowed to use an independent name, seen as part of their identity.
As of 2004, all Best Western hotels in the Caribbean, Canada, and the United States offered high-speed Internet access to their visitors. The same year, Best Western became the first Official Hotel of NASCAR, entering in a three year partnership.
Currently, the consolidated reservation centers are operated in Phoenix, Arizona; Manila, Philippines; and Milan, Italy. Best Western's offices can be found in Chicago, Atlanta, Buenos Aires, Dallas, London, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, New Delhi, Mexico City, New York City, Rio de Janeiro, Seattle, Toronto, Tokyo, Seoul, and Washington D.C. More than 90% of all member hotels in Canada and the United States are rated by AAA, with nearly 1,000 of them receiving a three diamond rating.