Starwood Hotels Franchise Completes Sale of W New York - The Court and W New York - The Tuscany for $78 Million

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT) announced today that it has completed the sale of the 198-room W New York - The Court and the 122-room W New York - The Tuscany for $78 million to St. Giles Hotels, LLC, a hotel owner and operator, operating under the St Giles Hotel's new contemporary brand. The two hotels, both located on 39th Street near Lexington Avenue, will no longer be affiliated with the W Hotels brand or Starwood Hotels & Resorts.

W The Court and W The Tuscany debuted as W Hotels in 1999 and were among the W brand's first properties. Today, Starwood has four W Hotels in the New York metro area, including W New York, W New York - Times Square, W New York - Union Square and W Hoboken. New York City, the birthplace of the W brand, continues to be a priority for the company, and this summer, W will debut the new 217-room W New York - Downtown.

On track to increase its portfolio to more than 50 hotels by end of 2011, W continues to be one of the fastest growing contemporary lifestyle brands, and in the last two years, W has opened new hotels in Hollywood, Barcelona, Hong Kong, Washington, D.C., Santiago, Istanbul, Boston, and South Beach, among other locations. With an aggressive global growth strategy, W will debut this year in London; Austin; Bali; Koh Samui, Thailand; St. Petersburg, Russia and Guangzhou, China, providing guests with an increasingly global experience to work and play. W's growth is a combination of new, showcase hotels as well as dynamic conversions that re-position real estate in a manner that is particularly attractive to owners and developers today.

According to Simon Turner, President of Global Development, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, the sale of W The Court and W The Tuscany as well as other recently announced asset sales are illustrative of Starwood's strategic disposition of owned real estate. "Starwood is fortunate to own numerous world-class assets. Over time we will continue to methodically review our property ownership positions and seek ways to enhance our brands and evaluate our real estate positions with the overriding objective of maximizing shareholder value. That could include unlocking real estate value by selling certain assets.

"In the vast majority of cases, when we sell an asset, we will continue to manage the property on a long term basis. However, in the case of W The Court and W The Tuscany, given that we have a significant, high profile and growing footprint in New York City combined with the evolution of the W brand, we made the decision to sell these legacy hotels without the W flag."

"These hotels are part of our history and helped to establish W in New York City," said Denise Coll, President, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, North America. "We'd like to thank our Talent at W The Court and W The Tuscany for helping bring to life all that is unique about W Hotels."

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.:

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1000 properties in 100 countries and approximately 145,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood(R) Hotels is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels and resorts with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis(R), The Luxury Collection(R), Sheraton(R), Westin(R), Four Points(R) by Sheraton, W(R), Le Méridien(R), and the recently announced Aloft(R)and ElementSM. Starwood Hotels also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., one of the premier developers and operators of high quality vacation interval ownership resorts.

About W Hotels Worldwide(R)

W Hotels is an innovative, contemporary, design-led lifestyle brand and the hotel category buster with 35 hotels and retreats in the most vibrant cities and exotic destinations around the world. Inspiring, iconic, innovative and influential, W Hotels provides the ultimate in insider access to a world of "Wow." Each hotel offers a unique mix of innovative design and passions around fashion, music and entertainment. W Hotels offers a holistic lifestyle experience that is integrated into the brand's sensibility through contemporary restaurant concepts, glamorous nightlife experiences, stylish retail concepts and signature spas. With more than 10 years of proven success, W Hotels is on track to more than double its footprint by 2011. W Hotels and W Retreats have been announced for Downtown New York, London, Paris, St. Petersburg, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Bali, Koh Samui, and Verbier, among other international destinations.

About St. Giles Hotel, LLC:

Note: This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities regulations. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated at the time the forward-looking statements are made. Further results, performance and achievements may be affected by general economic conditions, including the duration and severity of any global or regional economic downturns, the availability of financing alternatives at acceptable terms, the impact of war and terrorist activity, business and financing conditions, foreign exchange fluctuations, cyclicality of the real estate (including residential) and the hotel and vacation ownership businesses, operating risks associated with the hotel, vacation ownership and residential businesses. These risks and uncertainties are presented in detail in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Although we believe the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, we can give no assurance that our expectations will be attained or that results will not materially differ. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

SOURCE: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

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