White Plains, NY- December 6, 2007- aloha! Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.® (NYSE: HOT) and its much-anticipated new lifestyle brandaloftSM hotels today announced plans for the first aloft hotel in the Middle East - aloft Abu Dhabi. aloft is partnering with Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company PJSC (ADNEC) to open the new-build hotel in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. Construction starts in 2008, and the hotel is expected to open in late 2009.
The 308-room hotel will be located within the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, a key part of the Capital Centre mixed-use development. This micro-city consisting of premium office towers, luxury hotels and residences, restaurants, shopping and a marina is located just 20 minutes from downtown Abu Dhabi and 15 minutes from the Abu Dhabi International Airport. Anticipated to become the premier lifestyle and business hub of Abu Dhabi, Capital Centre is expected to dramatically change the skyline of Abu Dhabi with a total of 23 skyscrapers.
“Rich with tradition and alive with excitement, Abu Dhabi is a prime location for the first aloft hotel in the Middle East,” said Brian McGuinness, Vice President of aloft & element hotels worldwide. “We are thrilled to introduce a bold new destination sensation to one of the richest cities of the world, by providing a setting that celebrates style, culture and creativity.”
The second largest city of the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi is a cosmopolitan metropolis with bold urban architecture, lush gardens and traditional markets. Popular attractions include Al-Hosn Palace, the Cultural Foundation, and the recently revamped Abu Dhabi Corniche – a stretch of scenic waterfront overlooking the Persian Gulf.
“Abu Dhabi is an exciting, fast-growing city and ideal for the brand’s debut in the Middle East, giving us an opportunity to provide today’s forward-thinking travelers with a space that is open to design and open to possibilities,” Roeland Vos, President Europe, Middle East & Africa, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. “This development marks the start of what we hope will be a long-term relationship with Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company PJSC, as we bring the new tWist in travel to the Middle East.”
In addition to its loft-like guest rooms, aloft Abu Dhabi will also feature three food and beverage outlets and a gym. Located off Mussafah Road and Khaleej Al Arabi Street, the hotel is expected to benefit from direct access to the Exhibition Centre and the commercial components of Capital Centre.
“Capital Centre is one of the Middle East’s most significant developments and I am very pleased to welcome Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. to the project,” said Simon Horgan, Chief Executive Officer of ADNEC. “This entire master plan has been focused on creating the world’s leading exhibition and lifestyle destination, and the inclusion of this hip, new Starwood brand will help us achieve this vision.”
As a Vision of W Hotels, aloft is shaking up the lodging industry with urban-influenced design, accessible technology, style and a social atmosphere. aloft offers a total sensory experience, with guest lofts featuring loft-like nine-foot ceilings and oversized windows to create a bright, airy environment. The centerpiece of the loft room is the ultra-comfortable signature bed, and large stylish bathrooms complement the guest experience with oversized walk-in showers and amenities created by bliss® spa. Each guest loft is also a combination high-tech office and entertainment center, featuring wireless internet access and plug & play , a one-stop connectivity solution for multiple electronic gadgetry such as PDAs, cell phones, mp3 players and laptops - all linked to a large flat panel HDTV ready television for optimal sound and viewing.
Designed in conjunction with world renowned David Rockwell and the Rockwell Group, aloft stays true to the W Hotel brand’s heritage, offering atmospheric public spaces designed to draw guests from their rooms to socialize and make friends. Guests can read the paper, work on their laptops via hotel-wide wireless internet access, play a game of pool or grab a drink with friends at the re:mix communal lobby area and bar w xyz. The re:charge fitness center and splash, the indoor or outdoor pool, give travelers options to de-stress and re-energize; while re:fuel by aloft , a one-stop food and beverage area, offers sweet, savory and healthy food, snacks and beverages to grab & go, 24-hours a day.
The first aloft hotels are targeted to open in 2008, with locations expected to be anytown/anywhere… For more information on aloft, please visit www.alofthotels.com.
Infused with the DNA of W Hotels, aloft is a new destination sensation featuring loft-inspired design, accessible technology and a stylish urban attitude. Starwood anticipates the first aloft hotels to open in 2008, with 500 properties worldwide expected by 2012.
About Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Worldwide Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with approximately 890 properties in more than 100 countries and 145,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood® Hotels is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels and resorts with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, Aloft(SM), and Element(SM). 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.
About Abud Dhabi National Exhibitions Company PJSC
Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company PJSC was created in 2005 and wholly owned and is financially backed by the Government of Abu Dhabi.
The Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) is a first class MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) venue in the Middle East. ADNEC is following an expansion strategy with the aim of catalyzing the MICE industry in the UAE capital, and is developing a brand new 150,000 square metre business and leisure district termed Capital Centre. Situated close to the Airport, the AED 8 billion Centre will house the state-of-the-art Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, the iconic 35-storeyed Capital Gate, a micro-city consisting residential, commercial and hotel accommodation, a marina and waterfront leisure zone and an existing grandstand. For more information, please visit www.adnec.ae