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Propelled by Top Rankings From Travelers, Starwood’s Specialty Select Group Continues Fast-Paced Worldwide Expansion - juin 16, 2011
Starwood’s Specialty Select Portfolio, Including Aloft, Element, and Four Points by Sheraton, Has Grown 67% in Last Three Years and Will Open over 30 Hotels in 2011

Las Vegas, NV. June 16, 2011 – Three of the biggest success stories at the 2011 AAHOA Annual Convention come from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT), whose innovative Specialty Select Brand group continues to redefine its category. With distinct personalities and offerings that have reinvented and reinvigorated the select-service space, Starwood’s three brands - Aloft, Element, and Four Points by Sheraton - are reaping awards and top rankings from travelers, developers and the media.

“Our Specialty Select Brands continue to exceed the expectations of our guests and our partners, and their global growth reflects that,” said Simon Turner, President of Global Development for Starwood. “The distinct positioning of Aloft, Element, and Four Points continues to attract a loyal and growing fan base of global travelers which makes them highly sought after brands for developers.”

Starwood’s Specialty Select portfolio has grown 67 percent in the last three years.  With 1,051 Starwood properties now open in nearly 100 countries, Starwood’s select-service brands are a significant part of Starwood’s growth momentum. The portfolio will add over 30 new hotels in 2011.

  • Aloft:  Aimed at the digital generation, the design-led, social-experience Aloft brand has enjoyed the first global brand launch in hotel history and will celebrate its 50th opening next month. With a pipeline of over 25 hotels and growing, Aloft will open six more hotels by the end of 2011, including two in China, two in India, one in Thailand and one in South America.

    With its “style-at-a-steal” brand position, Aloft won coveted multiple spots on TripAdvisor’s 2011 “Top 10 Trendiest Hotels in the World” list.  According to TripAdvisor, the “very cool” Aloft Portland Airport (#5) and “hip” Aloft Nashville Cool Springs (#9) now belong in the rarefied company of independent buzz-worthy hotels like New York’s Crosby Street Hotel (#3), Ace (#3) and Seattle’s Maxwell (#10).

    Tech-savvy Aloft also made headlines this month by expanding its pioneering, automatic Smart Check-In program to five more hotels after a successful pilot.  Based on RFID technology, Smart Check-In will let guests zoom to their rooms at Aloft Harlem, Aloft Brooklyn, Aloft Dallas Downtown, Aloft Jacksonville Tapestry Park, and Aloft London by the end of 2011.  Smart Check-In made its debut at Aloft Lexington (MA) last year.

  • Element: Designed to be “green from the ground up,” Element seamlessly blends sustainable smart design, inspiring public spaces, chic, spacious suites and modern amenities for a compelling, no-compromise experience.  Element’s much-anticipated planned openings include Element Miami Airport and Element Vancouver Metrotown.

    In 2010, Element earned some of the highest Overall Satisfaction scores of any brand in the Starwood family.  All nine Element hotels in North America have ranked in TripAdvisor’s Top 20 2011 in their respective markets: Element Lexington (MA), Element Denver Park Meadows (CO), and Element Dallas Fort Worth Airport North (TX) were rated #1 among all hotels in their markets.

    Starwood's green trailblazer, Element made history as the first major hotel brand to mandate that all properties pursue LEED certification for high-performance buildings.  Last year, electric-vehicle charging stations were installed at all Element hotels.

    Four Points by Sheraton, one of Starwood’s fastest-growing brands with a pipeline of almost 40 hotels, will continue to launch in the world’s most dynamic business and travel hubs.  Four Points by Sheraton will add 20 hotels in 2011, including properties in China, Malaysia, Ukraine, and India. A $1 billion investment in renovations, conversions, and new-build hotels has made the brand stronger than ever.

    Four Points’ comfort, style, and value have proved a huge hit with travelers around the world. This year Four Points by Sheraton earned the #1 ranking in its category from industry authority Business Travel News in its much-anticipated annual survey.  The beloved brand also won “Most Improved” accolades in JD Power & Associates’ 2010 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study among mid scale full-service hotels.


“It’s a testament to the strength of our Specialty Select Brands that ratings from travelers have been so outstanding,” said Brian McGuinness, Starwood’s Senior Vice President, Specialty Select Brands. “Aloft, Element, and Four Points marry unique brand personalities with outstanding guest experiences, and that portends very well for continued and consistent growth.”

In 2009, Starwood created a dedicated Specialty Select Brand group to optimize support for franchise owners and hotels.  A separate unit remains fully dedicated to Starwood’s Full Service franchise hotels, including Le Méridien, The Luxury Collection, Sheraton and Westin.

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1051 properties in 100 countries and territories with 145,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood Hotels is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, resorts and residences with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, and the recently launched Aloft®, and Element SM.  The company boasts one of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG), allowing members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood Hotels also owns 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.

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