TAIPEI, Taiwan, Dec 06, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today opened the doors of its newest hotel, Le Méridien Taipei. Located in the most cosmopolitan district of Taipei - Xinyi District - and steps away from local cultural offerings, Le Méridien brand's first hotel in Taiwan ushers in a new dimension of timeless chic and will be a gathering place for creative guests, with an emphasis on the arts, an inspiring atmosphere, and innovative cuisine.
Chic and minimalistic, the 160-room Le Méridien Taipei goes beyond the traditional five-star hotel experience and invites guests and the local community to discover more than just a new destination - to experience a new perspective with a focus on contemporary art and cuisine. Le Méridien Taipei introduces the signature arrival experience programme for Le Méridien brand in Taiwan; a comprehensive contemporary art program "light and shadow; two inspiring new restaurant concepts: Humble House and Latest Recipe; an innovative coffee and chocolate café ChocoArt; and the chic lobby lounge bar Latitude 25 as well as the hotel's destination bar Quube. In addition, Le Méridien Taipei offers 1,700 square meters of contemporary meeting and function space which makes the hotel a perfect destination for creative workshops or board meetings.
"Le Méridien brand offers style, originality and a passion for culture, with a focus on contemporary art and cuisine in more than 100 hotels around the world. The progressive city of Taipei is known to be one that embraces culture and creativity, with its vibrant arts scene, rich cultural institutions and position as an international business epicenter. Taipei is definitely a great fit with Le Méridien brand and its clientele," said Eva Ziegler, Global Brand Leader, Le Méridien.
"We are excited about the debut of Le Méridien in Taipei," said Daven Tai, General Manager of Le Méridien Taipei. "Through our extensive and curated contemporary art events and innovative cuisine, Le Méridien Taipei will soon be the creative hub for Taipei, bringing a rich cultural experience to Taipei and inspiring our guests and local community to discover a new perspective."
In conjunction with its opening, Le Méridien Taipei has unveiled a signature arrival experience for its guests. The hotel has unveiled "Inner Waves 01," an artwork created for Le Méridien by artist Hisham Bharoocha. The artwork across the hotel's entrance is a signature element of Le Méridien brand's arrival experience, designed to reset the guest's mind upon arrival, leaving the outside world behind and open its mind for the world of Le Méridien.
Once through the hotel doors, guests will be enveloped by Le Méridien brand's signature scent, sound and use of light. Eddie Roshi and Fabrice Penot, LM100 members and founders of Le Labo, the innovative perfume house with stores in New York, Paris, Los Angeles and Tokyo, have created a signature scent for Le Méridien hotels. The exclusive custom scent, called LM01, has been designed based on a construction inspired by Meridian lines and shall evoke memories with the guests and create a sense of home.
Le Méridien brand has also transformed the expected and mundane event of riding an elevator into an "elevated experience" through the use of sound. Henri Scars Struck, another LM100 member, uses a mix of natural sounds and beats with music to create a 24-hour soundscape of forgotten sounds that is played in the elevators, an engaging experience for guests that evokes curiosity and dialogue.
A final component of the arrival experience is the Le Méridien UNLOCK ART programme, which includes an artist-designed key card collection that offers access to more than the guest's hotel room. Le Méridien Taipei's keycard has been created by LM100 member Michael Lin and is intended to become a collector's item that also grants guests complimentary access to a local cultural institution - the Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei.
Sophisticated and original in style, Le Méridien Taipei's design approach is understated and timeless, featuring over 700 original artworks created exclusively for the hotel by contemporary artists from around the world, including Taiwan, China, Japan, Belgium, the United Kingdom, and Germany, among others, imbuing the modern space with a sense of culture and art where travelers can begin exploring the charms of contemporary Taipei. Designed with the curious traveler in mind, the 160 guestrooms define contemporary luxury with sumptuous sitting and work areas, the Le Méridien signature bed, state-of-the art technology, and elegant bathrooms with rainforest shower and separate bath tub.
Le Méridien Taipei offers a range of innovative dining options, certain to impress even the most discerning guests. The hotel surpasses the traditional five-star dining experience through partnerships with three-star Michelin Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten and acclaimed mixologist Ernesto Lechthaler. My Humble House features traditional Cantonese cuisine in a casual and sophisticated setting, while international and local flavours abound at Latest Recipe. At ChocoArt, guests will discover the pleasures of chocolate in surprising new ways with its impressive array of chocolates, baked goods, coffee and even chocolate-infused body lotions and candles.
"I believe cuisine is a great way to express arts, culture and creativity," noted Mr. Tai. "Through our exemplary offerings, we strive to provide our guests a unique and more innovative hotel and dining experience."
While taking a break from exploring the dynamic Xinyi District that surrounds the hotel, guests of Le Méridien Taipei as well as local community have ample options to socialize, from its lounge bar Latitude 25 that features live entertainment and is an ideal locale to pass the time with friends or all-day dining at Latest Recipe. On the fifth floor, the chic lounge bar Quube is one of the few bars in Taipei with an outdoor seating area, allowing guests to unwind and enjoy the night scene of Taipei. To stay in shape and keep in form guests can enjoy the indoor heated pool, sauna, Jacuzzi, and well-equipped health club.
Le Méridien Taipei takes the stress out of planning for business-minded guests, who will have no trouble adjusting and working efficiently with the hotel's state-of-the-art audiovisual technology and professional business centre. With over 1,700 square meters of contemporary meeting and function space, Le Méridien Taipei serves as an ideal venue for business gatherings, weddings, creative meetings and private events. The talented creative event staff accommodates every need to the utmost ability, making it almost effortless to host an inspiring and successful event.
Le Méridien Taipei is centrally located at 38 Song Ren Road in Xinyi District, one of the most desirable addresses in Taiwan. A financial hub and premier shopping destination, the Xinyi District will suit guests visiting for business and pleasure alike. Just a few steps from Le Méridien Taipei are some of the most recognized landmarks in Taiwan, including Taipei 101, the second tallest building in the world, the Taipei World Trade Center, and an array of boutiques and department stores.
For reservations and more information, please visit www.lemeridien.com/taipei.
Le Méridien, the Paris-born hotel brand currently represented by 104 properties in 50 countries, was acquired by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) in November 2005. Since then, Le Méridien has gone through a brand re-launch, which included appointing a full-time Cultural Curator - French arts-provocateur Jérôme Sans - and transforming numerous guest touch points, thus brining unique and interactive experiences to its guests. With close to 80 of its properties located in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific, Le Méridien provides an international complement to Starwood's strong North American portfolio. Plans call for dynamic expansion of Le Méridien hotels and resorts within the next five years, concentrating in the U.S., Latin America, and Asia-Pacific, including destinations such as India, Thailand and China. Le Méridien recently opened new hotels in Dallas, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Shimei Bay (China), Xiamen (China), Chongqing Nan'an (China), Qingdao (China) and Taipei and recently signed a new deal in Coimbatore, India. For more information, please visit www.lemeridien.com.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1,025 properties in 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 Aloft(R), 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. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com
SOURCE: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.