Aloft Hotels Launches Ground-Breaking Online Experience for the High-Tech, Gen Y Traveler

Aloft becomes the first hospitality brand to incorporate original gaming into its Web experience

White Plains, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.® (NYSE:HOT) and its high-tech, style at a steal AloftSM Hotels brand, today announced the launch of the newly expanded Aloft Web site, featuring a range of interactive features never before developed by a hospitality brand. The site includes a guided insider's tour of the hotel, maps and city guides for each location and engages visitors through a series of original, branded games that bring the Aloft experience to life.

The Aloft brand's new online experience includes:

  • An Insider's Virtual Tour: Explore the look and feel of each area of the hotel and its unique design features with the click of a mouse.
  • Destination Map and City Guides: Browse a map of Aloft's global a-list locations and check out local hot spots, restaurants, cultural and off-the-beaten-path destinations, as well as staff picks and special city guide content provided by Travel + Leisure magazine.
  • Gaming and Trivia: Immerse yourself in the Aloft experience by spinning tunes as the Aloft DJ, trying your hand at bartending, enjoying a game of online billiards or challenging yourself by playing travel trivia games on the site.
  • Aloft Radio: Preview a sampling of the hotel's carefully curated and eclectic music with the special Aloft playlist.

"Since Aloft's groundbreaking virtual launch in cyberspace in partnership with Second Life, the brand has been leading the way in providing the most dynamic, high-tech experience for our guests," said Brian McGuinness, Starwood's Senior Vice President, Specialty Select Brands. "With the new site we wanted to extend the same energy and vibrancy one finds at each Aloft property to our virtual home and provide a truly unique and memorable experience that resonates with the savvy, Gen Y traveler."

To celebrate the launch of the new, starting May 5 visitors can enter "Aloft Explore, Amuse + Win" for the chance to win a grand prize of one million Starwood Preferred Guest® Starpoints®, enough for over 25 roundtrip airline tickets, more than 140 free nights at Aloft hotels or other surprise rewards. Playing "Click-to-Win" offers a chance at winning cool daily prizes, including the very latest tech and travel gadgets such as laptops, digital cameras, GPS systems, MP3 players, Aloft hotel getaways and more.

Technology has been a vital component of the Aloft brand since its debut in summer 2008. Every Aloft hotel features the brand's signature self-serve aloha kiosk, a touch-screen power house located in the lobby that makes check-in and check-out intuitive and effortless, and complimentary, hotel-wide, high-speed wired and wireless Internet access. Once inside their room, guests enter a calm oasis that is combination high-tech office and entertainment center, thanks to the plug & play system, a one-stop connectivity solution for multiple electronic gadgetry such as PDAs, cell phones, MP3 players and laptops – all linked to a large, 42" flat-panel HDTV-ready television for optimal sound and viewing.

About Aloft Hotels

Created to shake up the staid, traditional select service segment of the hotel industry, Aloft delivers urban-influenced, open and vibrant design and a social guest experience at an affordable price point. In the same way that W Hotels broke through the clutter of conformity in the upscale hotel arena a decade ago, Aloft is shaking up the industry for the next generation of traveler. Starwood recognized opportunity in the select serve market for reinvention and innovation and selected world renowned design and architecture firm Rockwell Group to collaborate on the new hotel concept. Aloft hotels are geared toward savvy, design-conscious consumers who grew up with the democratization of design Aloft hotels are wired for the future and an aggressive growth plan is in place with close to 50 properties set to open by the end of this year from Abu Dhabi and Baltimore to Dallas and Beijing and everywhere in between.

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 960 properties in 97 countries and 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 ElementSM. Starwood Hotels also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., one of the premier developers and operators of high quality vacation interval ownership resorts.

Source: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.



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