events & press releases
Find out why everyone's all buzz about aloft!
Check out the new Aloft Hotels social scene!
Sync up and link up with other Aloft fans. Check out our blog for the latest a-list info, connect with us on Facebook, challenge your friends to a game of pool, grab our cool new Style at a steal video widget, follow us on Twitter and much more.
w xyz bar
Set the vibe at twilight @ w xyz bar after 5pm. Sip on specialty cocktails, munch on a snack-attack menu and listen to cool tunes from acoustic sets and eclectic beats to sassy dj mixes.
Latest press buzz
Stamford, CT (January 7, 2014) – Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced it opened 74 new hotels in 2013, representing approximately 16,200 rooms in 22 countries, strengthening its global lead and expanding its footprint particularly in developing markets. The company signed 152 new hotel agreements in 2013, marking the fourth consecutive year of increased signings and the highest number of new hotel deals signed since 2007. Starwood expects another strong year of global growth in 2014, with hotel openings and deal signings across all nine brands in more countries than ever before through organic growth.
“There is a global travel revolution underway, and the secular trends of rising wealth, rapid urbanization and increasing digital interconnectivity make us as confident as ever about demand for high-end travel,” said Frits van Paasschen, President and CEO of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. “As the largest high-end hotel company in the world, with a penchant for innovation, an unmatched portfolio of design-led brands, global properties, and a valuable pipeline, Starwood is well positioned to benefit disproportionately from these seemingly unstoppable growth trends.”
Starwood signed more new hotel deals in 2013 since before the global economic crisis.
In 2013, Starwood signed a total of 152 new hotel management and franchise agreements, which represents an increase of 16 percent over 2012 signings levels. The company also signed 75 contract renewals, up nearly 34 percent from the previous year.
“Consistent, sustainable high-quality portfolio growth in both mature and emerging markets led to another strong year of openings, incremental hotel agreements and the highest number of contract renewals in our company’s history,” said Simon Turner, President of Global Development for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. “Our highly sought-after brands, backed by the collective strength of our global platform and experienced, local teams continues to give us an advantage and sets us apart from the competition, allowing us to deliver unmatched value to our hotel owners.”
Starwood has the largest high-end hotel portfolio of any of its competitors outside the United States, with nearly twice as many rooms as Marriott or Hilton, and nearly four times as many rooms as Hyatt in emerging markets. In line with macroeconomic trends, nearly 75 percent of the company’s development pipeline and 60% of the 2013 signings were in fast-growing markets, including Bangladesh, Malaysia, Indonesia, Colombia and Saudi Arabia.
van Paasschen continued: “Globalization continues to spur economic growth, infrastructure development and, for us, footprint expansion. 2014 already looks to be shaping up as a better version of 2013 with a number of key milestones for us, including the opening of our 200th Westin, 200th Four Points by Sheraton, and more Le Méridien hotels in any one year since we acquired the brand in 2005. We have a balanced approach to development, with continued focus on growth in the world’s fastest growing economies, and we are also seeing significant opportunities in established markets where conversion momentum continues and record low supply and growing demand are driving growth.”
Approximately 40% of Starwood’s 2013 signings were in developed markets, with 13 conversions that signed and opened within the year. Conversions will continue to fuel growth in North America with increased momentum in Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Europe.
Turner added: “We continue to look for the right partners, creating the right properties, in the right places, and our agile development approach allows us to adapt our growth strategies based on specific geographies and brand needs for both new development and conversions. Last year, we signed the most conversions in any one year since 2006, showing the increased demand for our brands and our flexibility, enabling our partners to maximize the value of their assets quickly and cost-effectively.”
Starwood is also seeing an increased interest in adaptive reuse projects, particularly for its Aloft brand. The company opened three such projects this year: Aloft Orlando Downtown, Aloft Tulsa Downtown and Aloft Miami – Brickell, in addition to signing Aloft New Orleans. Starwood will open another three adaptive reuse Aloft hotels in 2014 with Aloft Liverpool, Aloft Detroit, and Aloft Tampa Downtown, as the company continues to look for opportunities to use this approach across its brands in cities throughout the world.
Starwood Doubles Luxury Footprint in Six Years
As wealth rises around the world, so does the appetite for luxury hotel accommodations in all corners of the world. To meet this new global luxury demand, Starwood has doubled its luxury portfolio over the past six years, lengthening its lead in the luxury space. Today, Starwood has more than 160 luxury hotels operating under its St. Regis, The Luxury Collection and W brands, with more than 90 percent of the luxury pipeline in fast-growing markets.
Starwood opened six luxury hotels in 2013 including its first W ski retreat with the W Verbier, and its first W hotel in mainland China – W Guangzhou. Other luxury openings included The St. Regis Abu Dhabi, the brand’s second hotel in the Emirate and third hotel in the Middle East, and three properties under The Luxury Collection brand in Athens, Greece; Koh Samui, Thailand; and Cusco, Peru.
In 2014, the company will open 10 new luxury properties, making debuts in four countries. Key openings will include W Bogota, marking the W brand’s entry into Colombia; W Beijing, furthering the W brand’s footprint in strategic Chinese destinations; The St. Regis Istanbul and Chengdu; and six new hotels under The Luxury Collection brand in destinations including Odessa, Ajman, Dalian and Hangzhou in China, and Broumana in Lebanon.
Starwood’s Upper Upscale Brands Make Strong Gains
Starwood opened 30 hotels and signed 60 new hotel deals in the upper upscale segment in 2013, under its Sheraton, Le Méridien and Westin brands. The iconic Sheraton brand continues to serve as a growth leader for Starwood, paving the way for growth across the company’s other brands. This year, Sheraton will debut in numerous new markets including Samoa, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan, and re-enter Iraq with the opening of Sheraton Dohuk Hotel. Building on its first-mover advantage, the Sheraton brand is on track to open its 500th hotel in 2016.
Le Méridien signed more new hotel deals in 2013 and will open more new hotels in 2014 than any other year since Starwood acquired the brand in 2005. While conversion opportunities make up a significant part of the brand’s growth momentum in developed markets, Le Méridien brand is also continuing to expand its presence in less established regions around the world in 2014 with planned openings in markets such as India, Bangladesh, and Thailand.
Propelled by the worldwide success of its distinctive wellness positioning, Westin is poised to open its 200th hotel worldwide this year, as well as its 20th in China. Key Westin openings this year include The Westin Zhujiajian and The Westin Qingdao in China.
Starwood’s Mid-Market Brands Build on Strong Growth Momentum
Building on significant deal signing momentum in 2013, Starwood’s mid-market portfolio, or what the company refers to as its specialty select brands, including Four Points by Sheraton, Aloft and Element, has grown nearly 80 percent since 2008. These brands are gearing up for another strong year of growth, on the heels of 37 openings and 77 new signings in 2013. Four Points by Sheraton, Aloft and Element account for approximately 40 percent of the company’s development pipeline and nearly 45 percent of expected hotel openings worldwide in 2014, reflecting the appetite for affordable and reliable global hotel brands in both major metro and secondary or tertiary markets around the world.
The Four Points by Sheraton brand will reach its 200th hotel milestone in 2014 fueled by increasing demand in markets worldwide with more than 20 new hotels openings. The brand had a record year of signings and boasted the most openings and signings of any Starwood brand in 2013. Aloft Hotels, the design-led, tech-savvy hotel for the next generation of traveler, had the strongest signing year in 2013 since pre-crisis. This year, Aloft will open its fifth hotel in Latin America – Aloft Guadalajara, and make its debut in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Suwon-city, South Korea; and Liverpool, England. Starwood’s eco-innovation lab, Element Hotels, had its strongest year of signings in 2013 since pre-crisis, and will open four hotels in 2014, including one in Frankfurt, marking the brand’s entry in Europe.
Starwood Preferred Guest Continues to Reinvent Customer Loyalty
Just as the company’s footprint has grown significantly, its most valuable guests have also increased their loyalty to Starwood around the globe. Despite the global economic crisis, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) active membership has grown by 56 percent over the last five years. On any given night, more than half of Starwood’s guests are SPG members. Not only are there more people enrolled in SPG than ever before, the program makeup has shifted. In 2008, nearly two thirds of SPG members were U.S.-based, while today that number is only 47 percent. Membership in emerging markets has grown fivefold in that time. China has catapulted to Starwood’s second largest SPG market and fastest growing, followed by India, UAE and Brazil.
About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with nearly 1,200 properties in 100 countries, and 171,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. We are 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, Aloft®, and Element®. One of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) allows members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., a premier provider of world-class vacation experiences through villa-style resorts and privileged access to Starwood brands. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com .
# # #
LAS VEGAS, Nev. and STAMFORD, Conn. (Dec. 17, 2013)– Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) and Caesars Entertainment Corporation (NASDAQ: CZR) have raised the stakes for travelers by announcing a partnership between their award-winning loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG®) and Caesars Entertainment’s Total Rewards®. This innovative hospitality alliance marks the first time the travel and entertainment leaders will join forces.
By providing SPG and Total Rewards members the ability to both earn and redeem Starpoints and Reward Credits when staying at participating Starwood or Caesars Entertainment hotels, the partnership represents one of the most in-depth shared benefit and point accrual partnerships in the industry. Additionally, Moments by SPG will provide members with unique access to Caesars Entertainment’s world-class culinary outlets, shopping and entertainment experiences.
“We know our members enjoy music, sports and culture, but they also want access to entertainment and gaming as only Las Vegas can offer,” said Mark Vondrasek, Senior Vice President, Distribution, Loyalty and Partnerships for Starwood. “Through this new partnership with Caesars Entertainment, we can fuel our members’ passions by creating exclusive opportunities that allow guests to experience the best of Vegas and beyond from world-class restaurants to famous shows, shopping and nightlife.”
Members Win with Benefits and Points
Beginning Jan. 9, 2014, members who have linked their SPG and Total Rewards accounts will be eligible to earn both Starpoints and Total Rewards Reward Credits for stays at participating hotels and resorts across both networks. In addition, SPG members will be able to redeem Starpoints for stays at participating Caesars Entertainment resorts, and Total Rewards members will be able to redeem Reward Credits for stays at more than 1,100 Starwood properties.
- SPG members can earn two Starpoints/$1 in addition to standard Reward Credits for all stays at participating Caesars Entertainment hotels and up to 10 elite qualifying nights towards SPG status per year. SPG members can also redeem their Starpoints for free nights at Caesars hotels and can access amazing experiences in Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, Atlantic City and beyond through Moments by SPG at SPG.com/caesars.
- Total Rewards members will gain access to Starwood’s unsurpassed luxury hotel portfolio. Elite Total Rewards members will earn 1 Reward Credit for every eligible dollar spent at Starwood in addition to standard Starpoints earning and a flat 100 Tier Credits per qualifying stay. Total Rewards members can now also redeem Reward Credits for hotel stays at Starwood hotels. Additionally, Seven Stars members, the highest Total Rewards tier, will be upgraded to SPG Gold Status.
“Total Rewards has long been the leader in gaming and entertainment industry loyalty programs. We are continually seeking innovative partnerships that bring value to our members,” said Tariq Shaukat, Caesars Entertainment’s Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “Partnering with SPG provides our members access to the most luxurious hotels and resorts around the globe. This partnership sets Caesars and Starwood apart by allowing members to both earn and redeem points while doing the things they love most. As leaders in our industries, our programs are well-aligned because we put our guests first and provide them world class experiences they can’t get anywhere else.”
SPG Moments Hit the Vegas Strip
In addition to the dual earn and redeem benefits, SPG and Caesars will create one-of-a-kind experiences allowing guests to experience Las Vegas and the participating Total Rewards network like a high roller. Beginning today, SPG members can use their points to redeem exclusive experiences in Vegas and beyond, including:
Planet Hollywood Experience with premium Britney Spears show tickets and meet and greet (May 9-10, 2014) - Features a two-night stay in a Panorama Suite at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino with two Platinum tickets to see “Britney: Piece of Me” plus a meet and greet with the pop superstar.
“Wolf Pack Weekend” (SPG member chooses date) - Gather your buddies and head to Vegas with a two-night stay at Caesars Palace in the suite guests popularly refer to the “Hangover” suite; plus VIP table for up to eight guests at PURE Nightclub, includes admission and line pass; dinner at Nobu Restaurant & Lounge; roundtrip limo transfers and much more.
Vegas Uncork’d by Bon Appetit Weekend (May 9-11, 2014) – Features a two-night stay in an Octavius Tower deluxe room at Caesars Palace Las Vegas complemented by two tickets to the Vegas Uncork’d by Bon Appetit Grand Tasting Party with celebrity chef meet and greet (chef TBD).
Weekend in Vegas
To celebrate the new partnership, SPG will offer its Platinum Members the opportunity to take part in an unforgettable VIP weekend on the Las Vegas Strip. For just 15,000 Starpoints, SPG’s Platinum members will experience Las Vegas the way it should be– star-studded shows, amazing food and drinks and much more. For hotel accommodations during the VIP weekend, members will have the option of choosing one of three Caesars premiere Las Vegas hotels, including Caesars Palace, Paris Las Vegas and Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, as well as their choice of Las Vegas shows including: “Britney: Piece of Me” at Planet Hollywood, JERSEY BOYS at Paris Las Vegas, or Celine at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. Platinum members can redeem at SPG.com/moments
Ante Up to Live Large
Members can register at spg.com/caesars or totalrewards.com/spg, and benefits launch on Jan. 9, 2014. Members must be enrolled in both SPG and Total Rewards to register. Membership in both programs is absolutely free and can be completed at spg.com and totalrewards.com. For more information on the partnership, available experiences through Moments by SPG, as well as participating Starwood and Caesars Entertainment Total Rewards destinations, please visit: spg.com/caesars or totalrewards.com/spg.
About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc .
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1,169 properties in nearly 100 countries and 171,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood 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, Aloft®, and Element®. The Company boasts one of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest(R) (SPG), allowing members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., a premier provider of world-class vacation experiences through villa-style resorts and privileged access to Starwood brands. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com.
About Starwood Preferred Guest
Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG®) is an innovative, award-winning frequent traveler program uniting each of Starwood’s 9 distinctive hotel brands and includes more luxury hotels in more destinations around the world. SPG reinvented the hospitality loyalty landscape when it launched in 1999 with its breakthrough policy of no blackout dates and over the years has continued its tradition of innovation with enhancements such as Cash + Points, SPG MomentsSM, and most recently Your24TM and SPG LifetimeTM. In addition to Free Night Awards at over 1,150 hotels and resorts and Award Flights on over 350 major airlines without blackout dates, the Starpoints® members earn through SPG can be redeemed for access like no other to experiences in music, sports and the arts through SPG Moments. SPG also has an ongoing commitment to digital innovation to meet the needs of today’s connected global traveler – from the SPG app for iPhone that utilizes state-aware technology to create a more personalized hotel stay to Starwood’s Best Rate Guarantee on SPG.com, to SPG’s integration within various social media platforms. Offerings such as these have helped SPG build a passionate member base among the world’s most frequent travelers. Learn more at spg.com and spg.com/moments and stay connect to us on twitter.com/spg, instagram.com/spg, facebook.com/spg, foursquare.com/spg, pinterest.com/spglife, and youtube.com/spg.
About Caesars Entertainment Corporation
Caesars Entertainment Corporation is the world's most diversified casino-entertainment company. Since its beginning in Reno, Nevada, more than 75 years ago, Caesars has grown through development of new resorts, expansions and acquisitions and now operates casinos on four continents. The company's resorts operate primarily under the Caesars®, Harrah's® and Horseshoe® brand names. Caesars also owns the London Clubs International family of casinos. Caesars is focused on building loyalty and value with its guests through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership. We are committed to environmental sustainability and energy conservation and recognize the importance of being a responsible steward of the environment. For more information, please visit www.caesars.com.
About Total Rewards
Total Rewards, a loyalty program connecting millions of active members who visit nearly 40 Caesars Entertainment properties nationwide, is focused on building loyalty with guests through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership. With Total Rewards, members have access to the largest network of hotel and entertainment options in the gaming industry and are able to take advantage of endless amenities, including exclusive access to unique experiences and benefits. The industry-leading program was also recognized for innovation in 2012 and 2013 with the Colloquy Master of Enterprise Loyalty award. Total Rewards’ major resort brands include Caesars Palace, Horseshoe, Harrah’s, Flamingo, Bally’s, Paris and Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. For more information, visit TotalRewards.com.