W Hotels Gets Fancy for Pride

W Hotels Continues Ongoing Support for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) by Partnering with Artist Baron Von Fancy for a Series of Exclusive, Fundraising Snapchat Filters

Guests and Locals Invited to Snap Their Support for HRC by Using Three Unique Filter Designs at W Hotels across the USA; W to Donate One Dollar to HRC for Each Filter Use

NEW YORK - June 6, 2016 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Just in time for PRIDE celebrations across the country, W Hotels, part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT), is partnering with irreverent multimedia artist Baron Von Fancy for a trio of exclusive Snapchat filters to support the ongoing efforts of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve LGBT equality. W Hotels commissioned Von Fancy to create three eye-catching pieces of original art in his signature bold graffiti lettering, which have been turned into exclusive Snapchat filters. Beginning now through the end of the month, whenever someone uses the filter at or around a W Hotel in the United States, $1.00 will be donated to HRC. The W Hotels x Baron Von Fancy PRIDE Snapchat Filters include:

  • ‘Love Won’
  • ‘I Am What I Am’
  • ‘The Road to Equality Has Never Been Straight’

“W Hotels has always been ‘out’ about our support of the LGBT community, and we see our guests share their PRIDE from our hotels on their social media channels daily,” said Anthony Ingham, Global Brand Leader, W Hotels Worldwide. “Last year, we joined forces with HRC in the fight for marriage equality, and while they were successful with the Supreme Court’s landmark decision, the fight for true equality is far from over. We’re thrilled to be partnering with the brilliant Baron Von Fancy who is able to masterfully articulate what we’re all thinking through his incredible work. Our guests can show their support in a playful way as we donate money to a serious cause.”

The W Hotels x Baron Von Fancy PRIDE Snapchat Filters are available now through June 30th as location-based art overlays that Snapchat users can apply to their photos or video Snaps. This collection of filters marks the second Snapchat campaign from W Hotels, after W became the first hospitality brand to launch a Snapchat Sponsored Geofilter in 2015.

“I’m psyched to help W show their PRIDE this season”, said Von Fancy. “My work says what people sometimes think they can’t say out loud, but W guests are bold and audacious and don’t shy away from sharing how they feel. Having W put my work on Snapchat helps spread the message even further, and I love that.”

Von Fancy’s original, full-size commissioned works will be on display starting June 16 at W New York - Union Square and then head to W Atlanta – Midtown and W Austin for installations around each city’s PRIDE festivities. At each stop, W Hotels, HRC and Von Fancy will celebrate with guests and locals alike in an effort to raise additional funds for HRC. Check out whotels.com/theangle for more details and to get involved.

“W Hotels is an important, long-standing supporter of the Human Rights Campaign and we are thrilled to be working with them again this year to help raise awareness and funds,” said Olivia Alair Dalton, HRC's Senior Vice President of Communications & Marketing. “With LGBT people in the United States and around the globe continuing to face significant discrimination, this initiative offers individuals a creative way to show, share and celebrate their support for equality.”

This innovative campaign also marks the continuation of the W brand’s ongoing TURN IT UP FOR CHANGE campaign to benefit HRC. Launched in 2014, the campaign initially began as a fundraising and awareness initiative to support the fight for nationwide marriage equality. Grammy® and Academy Award® winner Jennifer Hudson lent her support and voice to the cause with private performances, a music video shot at W Hollywood (which was later nominated for an MTV Video Music Award for “Best Video with a Social Message”), and a surprise set at W Dallas during one of the first legal same-sex marriages in the state of Texas.

About W Hotels Worldwide

W Hotels is a contemporary, design-led lifestyle brand and the industry innovator with 47 hotels, including 18 W-branded residences, in the most vibrant cities and exotic destinations around the world. Inspiring, iconic, innovative and influential, W Hotels provides the ultimate in insider access, offering a unique mix of cutting-edge design and passions around fashion, music and entertainment. With over 15 years of proven success, W Hotels is on track to reach 75 hotels by 2020. W Hotels have been announced for Shanghai, Tel Aviv, Goa, Abu Dhabi, Phuket, Dubai, Amman, Jakarta, Panama, Riviera Maya, Muscat, Hainan Island, Suzhou, Changsha, Chengdu, New Delhi, Kuala Lumpur, Shenyang, Marrakech, Brisbane, Aspen and Madrid. For more information, visit whotels.com/theangle or follow Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

About Human Rights Campaign

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.

About Baron Von Fancy

A New York-based multimedia artist, Baron Von Fancy (real name Gordon Stevenson) moves candidly between mediums to experiment with concept, color and humor, his hard-to-miss phrases shot to fame through Instagram. Von Fancy has collaborated with fashion, apparel, beauty and sportswear brands including Bobbi Brown Cosmetics, Juicy Couture, Elizabeth Arden, Rag & Bone, Uber and Louis Vuitton. Baron Von Fancy is represented by Iconoclast Artist Management based out of NYC. For more information on the Artist, you may visit www.icnclst.com

SOURCE Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

Media Contacts:

Katie Cline
W Hotels Worldwide
1-212-380-4013
Katie.Cline@starwoodhotels.com

Simon Neggers
W Hotels Worldwide
1-212-380-4029
Simon.Neggers@starwoodhotels.com

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