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Starwood Hotels & Resorts Gives Guests The Chance to ‘Say It Like It Is’ with The Launch Of Online Ratings & Reviews - October 24, 2011
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced a new place for travelers to get unbiased hotel ratings and reviews – its own websites.

White Plains, NY October 24, 2011- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced a new place for travelers to get unbiased hotel ratings and reviews – its own websites. Recognizing that in the digital information age travelers research hotels differently, Starwood is one of the first major hotel companies to invite guests to contribute ratings and reviews directly on its hotel websites.

In a recent survey, nearly 85% of Starwood Preferred Guest® members said they find value in consumer ratings and reviews on travel sites.  Starwood is making it easier for consumers to find the information they crave with reviews displayed directly on the hotel page they are viewing. The open forum gives travelers a place to share and search for genuine hotel reviews – both the positive and the negative – so they can plan their ideal hotel stay.  Taking authenticity a step further, Starwood is also making sure all comments are from guests who actually stayed at the hotel. Reviews are verified by a hotel reservation confirmation.

“Our goal is to provide everything a guest needs to select and book their best hotel experience and there’s no better place to offer this information than on our own websites,” said Chris Holdren, Senior Vice President, Starwood Preferred Guest. “Starwood’s new ratings and reviews platform provides a valuable new way for guests to learn from the experiences of fellow travelers.”

Starwood believes the key to building deeper relationships with its most loyal guests is through access to honest and transparent information. Guests can now post ratings and reviews based on a variety of criteria including: Overall Rating, Room Comfort, Staff Met My Needs, Room Cleanliness and SPG Recognition. Helping to create a more personalized experience, guests can also filter review content to see the information that is most relevant to them including: Star Rating, Purpose of Travel, Frequency of Travel, SPG Level, Above/Met Expectations and Below Expectations. Reviews can also be shared through social media channels, including both personal and property Facebook pages.

“With the launch of Ratings & Reviews, Starwood is showing a true commitment to embracing the authentic voice of their customers,” said Erin Mulligan Nelson, Bazaarvoice CMO.  “We’re proud to work with them as they continue to lead the way for the travel industry.”

Starwood’s ratings and reviews are powered by Bazaarvoice.

About Bazaarvoice
Bazaarvoice's Software as a Service (SaaS) social commerce solutions have powered more than 250 billion customer conversations on brand web sites like Best Buy, Blue Shield of California, Costco, Dell, Macy's, P&G, Panasonic, QVC, and USAA. The company connects organizations to their influencers through a unique network that reaches hundreds of millions of consumers around the globe, enabling authentic customer-powered marketing. Through syndication, analytics, partnerships, and consulting, Bazaarvoice brings the voice of the customer to the center of their clients' business strategy, proving "social" can drive measured revenue growth and cost savings for manufacturing, retail, travel, and financial services companies. Headquartered in Austin, the company has offices in Amsterdam, London, Munich, Paris, Stockholm, and Sydney. For more information and access to client success stories, visit www.bazaarvoice.com, read the blog at www.bazaarvoice.com/blog, and follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bazaarvoice.

About Starwood Preferred Guest
The SPG® program’s breakthrough policy of No Blackout Dates at the world’s most sought after collection of hotels, reinvented the hospitality loyalty program when it launched in 1999. By creating a program centered on its members, SPG has developed the most passionate and knowledgeable membership base in the hotel loyalty space. Through its use of new technologies and innovative channels such as SPG.com, SPG.com/stay connected, SPG.com/flights and others, SPG continues to innovate and lead the industry. By offering No Blackouts on standard rooms at over 1,000 hotels and resorts in nearly 100 countries, No Blackouts on hundreds of airlines, and once in a lifetime experiences available through SPG Moments at spg.com/moments, the program has proven to be a big draw for the world’s most frequent travelers, and a significant competitive advantage for Starwood.  For more information about Starwood Preferred Guest please visit SPG.com.

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1058 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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