Aloft Makes Landmark Debut in the Middle East

Aloft Makes Landmark Debut in the Middle East

Aloft Abu Dhabi Introduces Style at a Steal in the Capital of the United Arab Emirates

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.® (NYSE:HOT) and its new destination sensation brand, Aloft® Hotels, today announce the opening of Aloft Abu Dhabi, the first Aloft to open in the Middle East and the second Aloft to open outside of North America.

Ten years after Starwood Hotels & Resorts shook up the hotel industry with the launch of W Hotels, the innovative hotel giant has again reinvented hotel design with the debut of its newest brand, Aloft Hotels. Featuring loft-like guest rooms, a buzzing bar scene in the open lobby, an urban-inspired grab-and go café and industrial design elements throughout, Aloft delivers urban-influenced, modern and vibrant design and an energetic guest experience at an affordable price point.

The debut of Aloft Abu Dhabi highlights the strategic international expansion of the Aloft brand. After opening its first hotel in June 2008 in Canada, Aloft has since grown to nearly 40 hotels strong in three countries – the United States, China and Canada – with the United Arab Emirates marking its fourth. And looking ahead to 2010, Aloft will continue its global growth with slated debut openings in Belgium, India and Thailand. Aloft Abu Dhabi is also the first of two Aloft hotels coming to the Middle East in the next two years, with the Aloft Riyadh scheduled for a 2011 opening.

"The meaningful growth of Aloft in key markets such as the Middle East underscores the strength of the Starwood network and the strength of Starwood's global relationships with experienced hotel developers," said Simon Turner, President, Global Development for Starwood Hotels & Resorts. "The Aloft brand's emphasis on high design and affordability translates globally and is attracting a growing group of developers and travelers who are very enthusiastic consumers of our global, high-caliber brands. In fact, Aloft represents one of the strongest brand launches in industry history, and its international expansion so early in the brand's life cycle is unprecedented."

Aloft Abu Dhabi introduces style at a steal to the region with 408 spacious, loft-like rooms, accessible technology and a vibrant, social atmosphere. A Vision of W Hotels, Aloft's loft-inspired design, accessible technology and a stylish urban attitude arrives on the scene in the Middle East. Aloft offers atmospheric public spaces where guests can mix and mingle, read the paper, work on laptops, play a game of pool or grab a drink with friends at the re:mixSM communal lobby area and w xyzSM bar. The re:chargeSM fitness center and splash pool give travelers options to de-stress and re-energize, or enjoy a meal at Dine, the hotel's main restaurant with live-cooked international-style cuisine. Feel the buzz of our open kitchen and boost your energy at Dine. re:fuel by Aloft is a one-stop, 24-hour grab & go food and beverage area, offering sweet, savory and healthy food, snacks and beverages. Or visit relax@12, an indoor/outdoor lounge where guests can find oriental bites, yummy tapas and a sassy sushi selection. The re:charge fitness centre and splash, the outdoor pool, give guests options to de-stress and re-energize. Maï Café, the ultimate chill-out spot on the fifth floor, offers exciting international flavours, oversized beach chairs and unique custom cocktails, complimented by our eclectic mix of laid-back tunes and sunny grooves.

"We are thrilled to introduce Aloft to Abu Dhabi, a fitting choice for the brand's debut in the Middle East," said Brian McGuinness, Starwood's Senior Vice President and Global Brand Leader, Specialty Select Brands. "The hotel's strategic location in the hub of the capital city makes a bold statement about how the brand is taking its innovative, fresh perspective on hotels to the most desirable locations around the world."

First time visitors to Aloft will immediately understand that Aloft is different from any other hotel experience. Guests are greeted by special features and visually distinctive iconic structures on the exterior, including a colorful, sloping signature carport cover and building roof-line, and colorful glowing linear light sources on the building facade inspired by the notion of travel and motion.

Aloft guest rooms feature the brand's signature ceilings of nearly three meters high, oversized windows and an ultra-comfortable bed, as well as roomy walk-in showers and bath amenities created by Bliss® Spa. Each Aloft room is equipped with complimentary wireless Internet access and a one-stop connectivity solution for multiple electronic gadgetry all linked to a 42" flat-panel, HDTV-ready television making it a combination high-tech office and entertainment center in one.

The new hotel is linked directly to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition, Centre (ADNEC), the Gulf's largest exhibition centre which is at the heart of the Capital Centre district, a micro-city consisting of premium office towers, luxury hotels and residences, restaurants, shopping and a marina. The hotel will even provide guests direct access to the soon-to-open Re:lax@12 rooftop bar, Mai Restaurant & Bar and Dine Restaurant – all located on site. Ideally positioned right next to the Capital Centre district, Aloft Abu Dhabi is close to numerous embassies and corporate offices, 20 minutes from downtown Abu Dhabi and 15 minutes from Abu Dhabi International Airport.

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. 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 40 properties set to be 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 982 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® 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.

About Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC)

Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) is a strategic international venue development and management company. ADNEC's venue portfolio includes one of the most modern exhibition centers in the world - the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, and the UK capital's largest exhibition and conference venue, ExCeL London. ADNEC is creating unique business districts to serve Abu Dhabi's rapid expansion and emergence on the global stage. Development projects surrounding the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre include Capital Centre (a mixed-use development of 23 hotel, residential, commercial and mixed-use towers adjacent to the exhibition centre), Capital Gate (an iconic 35 storey gravity defying feature tower, featuring the 5-star hotel - 'Hyatt at Capital Centre'), the Aloft Hotel and a 2.4km Marina zone on Al Bateen Channel opposite to the exhibition centre. In addition, ADNEC is expanding within the region, with The Al Ain Convention Centre, a residential and business micro city around a state-of-the-art convention centre.

Source: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.



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