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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., April 28, 2005 – Since 1999, frequent travelers from around the world have recognized Starwood Preferred Guest as the hospitality industry’s top-rated loyalty program and now the program that introduced no black-out dates has done it again! Last night Starwood Preferred Guest was once again voted Program of the Year in both America and Internationally during the 17th Annual Freddie Awards, one of the most prestigious honors in the travel industry. On the heels of celebrating its sixth anniversary, Starwood Preferred Guest also took top honors for Best Elite Level, Best Award, Best Redemption and Best Customer Service.
Known as the frequent travelers answer to the Oscar, Emmy and Grammy Awards, the Freddie Awards recognize the best loyalty programs in the world. The awards are voted on by frequent travelers via Insideflyer magazine and an Internet survey, giving those who travel most the opportunity to voice their opinions on favorite airlines, hotels and credit card loyalty programs. The Freddie Awards have grown in stature and importance over the past 17 years and are regarded as the most prestigious consumer-generated travel awards in the industry.
“We are honored to receive this award on the heels of Starwood Preferred Guest’s sixth anniversary,” said Jim Berra, senior vice president, customer marketing for Starwood. “We have taken top honors at the Freddie’s since we launched the program and we are thrilled that we continue to strike a chord with frequent travelers. When we first introduced Starwood Preferred Guest our goal was to offer our members benefits that would truly change the world of travel loyalty programs and set a benchmark in the way the travel industry does business and it is this philosophy that has made Starwood Preferred Guest the number one hotel loyalty program six years in a row.”
Starwood Preferred Guest made headlines when it launched in 1999 with a breakthrough policy of no blackout dates and no capacity controls, meaning members can redeem free nights anytime, anywhere. Starwood Preferred Guest members have also cited the program’s hassle-free award redemption, outstanding customer service, dedicated member website and innovative promotions and benefits for elite members. The program boasts an unrivaled portfolio of award-winning hotels and resorts that includes some of the world’s most celebrated hotel brands: St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, Westin, Sheraton, W Hotels and Four Points by Sheraton.
Starwood Preferred Guest also offers members the ability to redeem awards at more resorts, more luxury properties, more European hotels and more golf properties than any other hotel program, which has proven to be a big draw for the world’s most frequent travelers, and a significant competitive advantage.
Starwood Preferred Guest opens the door to some of the world’s best hotels. Key business destinations around the globe are covered, and leisure opportunities are endless with more than 125 world-class resorts and over 2,700 holes of golf worldwide. Over 50 Starwood properties were listed on the recently announced Condé Nast Traveler 2005 Gold List.
For more information about Starwood Preferred Guest, or reservations, please visit www.spg.com or call (877) – STARWOOD.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with approximately 750 properties in more than 80 countries and 120,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. With internationally renowned brands, Starwood® corporation is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels and resorts including: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, Sheraton®, Westin®, Four Points® by Sheraton, and W®, Hotels and Resorts as well as Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., one of the premier developers and operators of high quality vacation interval ownership resorts. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com .