Aloft Franchise Makes Landmark Debut in India

Aloft Franchise Makes Landmark Debut in India

Aloft Chennai Introduces Style at a Steal

CHENNAI, India (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.(R) (NYSE: HOT) introduces style at a steal by announcing the opening of Aloft Chennai OMR-IT Expressway, the first Aloft hotel to open in India and the 42nd Aloft hotel globally. A second Aloft hotel is scheduled to open on 01st August 2010 in Bangalore. Urbanedge Hotels, a special purpose vehicle (SPV) of Auromatrix Hotels Private Limited, plans to set up several properties of Aloft hotels in the country over the next few years.

Starwood has reinvented hotel design with the debut of its newest brand, Aloft Hotels. With more than 40 hotels open since its June 2008 debut, the Aloft brand became the talk of the hospitality industry by going global while in launch mode, opening China's Aloft Beijing Haidian and Aloft Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates in the brand's first 15 months. Featuring large guest rooms, a buzzing bar scene, 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.

Aloft, the sizzling tech-savvy brand that has rocked the U.S. hospitality industry, is Starwood's design-led, social-experience brand that has enjoyed the fastest ramp-up of any brand in hotel history. As a young, tech-driven society, India will become a key market for the Aloft brand's development outside of the United States.

"India is a key focus of Starwood's expansion efforts in large part because it is a market that today is relatively under-hoteled. India is one of the most promising markets within Asia Pacific, with GDP estimates topping seven percent for the next two years and a consumer market expected to rank as the world's fifth biggest by 2025," said Vasant Prabhu, Vice Chairman and CFO for Starwood. "The market is especially ripe for mid-market products like Aloft and we look forward to opening several more Aloft hotels in India over the next few years."

"The energy of Aloft properties in India will reflect the dynamism of the cities where we're opening our doors," said Brian McGuinness, Senior Vice President, Specialty Select Brands for Starwood. "And, we're excited to connect with India's tastemaking Gen Y travelers, who've been eager for a hotel experience that matches their very forward-thinking sensibilities."

"We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with Starwood. Aloft will raise the bar in the mid-market category, offering urban-inspired guest rooms, leading edge technology services, and an energetic lounge scene, inspiring and indulging its guests with thoughtful, refreshing and stylish experiences," said Kumar Sitaraman, Chairman & CEO of Auromatrix Hotels.

Aloft Chennai OMR-IT Expressway features 130 spacious, loft-like rooms, accessible technology and a vibrant, social atmosphere. The hotel is located on the Old Mahabalipuram Road (OMR), the hub for IT development in Chennai. The hotel is also adjacent to over 5,000 square feet of meeting space and a restaurant.

Aloft Bengaluru Whitefield will include 170 rooms, and access to a large restaurant as well as more than 8,500 square feet of meeting space. The hotel will be located in Whitefield, Bangalore, one of the city's two major clusters of IT industries, home to several IT parks and an export promotion zone.

Aloft Hotels offers a total sensory experience, with guest rooms featuring nine-foot ceilings and oversized windows to create a bright, airy environment. The centerpiece of the Aloft room is the ultra-comfortable signature bed. Large stylish bathrooms complement the guest experience with oversized walk-in showers and bath amenities created by Bliss. Each guest loft is also a combination high-tech office and entertainment center, featuring fast and free 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.

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 Chennai, OMR-Sholinganalur and Aloft Bangalore, Whitefield will offer 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 (SM). The re:charge fitness center and splash, the pool, give travelers options to de-stress and re-energize; and a one-stop food and beverage area, offers sweet, savory and healthy food, snacks and beverages to grab & go, 24-hours a day.

About Aloft Hotels

Created to shake up the staid, traditional select service segment of the hotel industry, Aloft Hotels delivers style at a steal with urban-influenced, modern, open and vibrant design - and a social guest experience - all at an affordable price point. In the same way that W(R) 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. With more than 40 hotels open in the 18 months since Aloft first arrived on the scene and 10 more opening in 2010, Aloft can be found everywhere from Abu Dhabi and Baltimore to Dallas and Beijing and everywhere in between.

Guests at Aloft can earn free nights at any Starwood Hotels & Resorts property - the world's most sought-after collection of hotels - through the Preferred Guest program.

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 nearly 100 countries and territories with 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(R), The Luxury Collection(R), W(R), Westin(R), Le Méridien(R), Sheraton(R), Four Points(R) by Sheraton, and the recently launched AloftSM, 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.

SOURCE: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.



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