STAMFORD, Conn. - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Jul. 17, 2013 - Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced plans to open both a Sheraton and Le Méridien hotel in Charlotte's bustling uptown business district as part of a $20 million conversion and renovation project. Sheraton Charlotte Hotel and Le Méridien Charlotte will each occupy one tower of a massive hotel complex, currently operated as The Blake Hotel. Owned by Carolina Hospitality and managed by Wischermann Partners, Sheraton Charlotte Hotel will open on August, 15. The other hotel tower will operate as an independent hotel through renovations and re-open as Le Méridien Charlotte in January 2014.
"This strategic conversion project gives Starwood the opportunity to both debut Le Méridien and expand the Sheraton portfolio in Charlotte, the second largest banking center in the United States after New York City," said Allison Reid, Senior Vice President of North American Development. "The opening of Sheraton Charlotte Hotel will accelerate the Sheraton brand's global $8 billion expansion effort, while Le Méridien Charlotte will provide even more momentum to the global brand's portfolio growth across North America."
Located at 555 South McDowell Street, the dual-hotel complex is walking distance to the Time Warner Cable Arena, the Charlotte Convention Center, the light rail system, and the offices of Bank of America, BB&T and Wachovia. Charlotte/Douglas International Airport (CLT) is just seven miles away and nearby attractions include the NASCAR Hall of Fame, the shops at Carolina Place, and Bank of America Stadium - home of the Carolina Panthers.
Sheraton Charlotte Hotel and Le Méridien Charlotte will each have its own porte-cochere, entrance and lobby and will share a 24-hour fitness center, spa, indoor and outdoor pools and pool bar, underground parking, and 55,000 square feet of flexible meeting space. There will be a total of six restaurants between the two towers following the opening of both hotels, including a lobby bar and full-service restaurant in the Sheraton tower, and Le Méridien's Hub and signature Latitude Bar. Additionally, Le Méridien Charlotte will feature a spectacular rooftop bar that showcases beautiful views of the downtown Charlotte skyline. All dining outlets will be accessible to guests at both hotels.
Prior to opening, Sheraton Charlotte Hotel will implement the Sheraton brand's signature Link@Sheraton® experienced with Microsoft® and Link@Sheraton Café. All 306 guest rooms will be fully refurbished and outfitted with the all-white Sheraton Sweet Sleeper® bed, designed to meet AAA's Five Diamond Award® criteria, as well as an oversized work desk, ergonomic chair, high-speed Internet, and LCD flat panel television. Following further renovations, the hotel's fitness facility will feature the brand's revolutionary new health and fitness program, Sheraton Fitness, Programmed by Core PerformanceTM, designed exclusively for Sheraton guests through its partner Core Performance.
Le Méridien Charlotte will undergo extensive renovations to its public areas and its 305 guest rooms prior to opening. The hotel will feature the Le Méridien HubTM experience, which re-interprets the traditional lobby into a social gathering place for creative people to converse, debate, and exchange, further building on the brand's award-winning arrival experience and curated coffee culture. Le Méridien arrival consists of four elements: large-scale artwork in high impact areas to reset the mind and stimulate dialogue and curiosity; the sensory experience, illustrated through Le Méridien signature scent, sound and use of light, creating a unique and distinctive atmosphere; UNLOCK ARTTM program, featuring LM100 TM artist designed key card collections that not only offer access to the guestroom but also to Le Méridien affiliated contemporary cultural centers in the city; and a 24-hour curated soundtrack.
Sheraton Hotels & Resorts and Le Méridien, like all brands within Starwood's robust portfolio, are proud to offer the Starwood Preferred Guest® program, which made headlines when it launched in 1999 with a breakthrough policy of no blackout dates on Free Night Awards. SPG® offers members the ability to redeem awards at more resorts, more luxury properties, more European hotels and more golf properties than any other hotel program.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1,146 properties in nearly 100 countries and 171,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood 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, Aloft®, and Element®. The Company boasts one of the industry's leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®), allowing members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., a premier provider of world-class vacation experiences through villa-style resorts and privileged access to Starwood brands. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com.
Wischermann Partners, Inc. is a national hospitality firm, focused on the operations of upper upscale and luxury hotels. Recognized by clients, peers and industry experts, Wischermann Partners brings a unique mix of knowledge, experience and insight to hospitality management, development and acquisitions. Currently, Wischermann Partners operates a hotel portfolio of more than 2,800 rooms. For more information about Wischermann Partners, please visit www.wischermannpartners.com.
(Note: This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities regulations. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance or events and involve risks and uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results or events to differ materially from those anticipated at the time the forward-looking statements are made. 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 and events 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.) The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
Source: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Global Public Relations, Le Méridien