PHOENIX - September 18, 2013 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - From the Lodging Conference 2013, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT) today announced its sizzling Aloft brand has reached the 75th hotel milestone with the opening of Aloft Panama, the brand’s fourth hotel in Latin America. After the most global brand launch in the history of hospitality, Aloft is already operating in 14 countries and is set to debut in another 10 countries by 2016. In the past six months alone, the Aloft brand has opened hotels in Miami, Chicago, Cleveland, Tulsa, Cancun, Bursa, Kuala Lumpur and Ahmedabad. The brand’s momentum continues unabated and the company expects to open a total of 17 hotels by year’s end, more than tripling the number of rooms opened in 2012, with another 19 hotels to come by the end of 2014.
"To keep up with growing owner and guest demand around the world, we’ve developed a conversion-friendly strategy that allows our partners to reposition assets in a time and cost-effective manner while maintaining brand integrity, and grow not only through new builds, but also through conversions and adaptive re-use projects."
Unlike other hotel brands that are just beginning to realize the importance of catering to the always-connected lifestyle of today’s travelers, Aloft Hotels was conceived with this notion and guest in mind. Pioneering initiatives in music, design, and technology, the Aloft brand continues to exceed travelers’ expectations and has cultivated high guest satisfaction and brand loyalty since its launch.
"From the start, Aloft has been an industry game-changer that has turned the specialty select category on its head," said Brian McGuinness, Senior Vice President of Specialty Select Brands for Starwood. "With its design-led focus, accessible new technologies and buzzing social scene, Aloft delivers exactly what the next generation traveler wants now. The fact that we can deliver this all at an affordable price point, in more and more markets each year, has helped fuel the brand’s worldwide growth."
In North America, the Aloft brand has reached 55 hotels with nearly 20 more in the pipeline, while Asia Pacific remains the brand’s second fastest growing market with a total of 12 hotels currently open. In the next 12 months, Aloft Hotels will add three more hotels to its China portfolio with openings slated for Dalian, Yancheng and Guangzhou, and another two hotels in India with openings in Bengaluru and New Delhi. In Latin America, Aloft will increase its portfolio to six hotels in 2014, with new hotels set to debut in Guadalajara and Merida, and the brand will also expand in the Middle East with the opening of Aloft Riyadh early next year.
"Aloft’s truly global growth since its introduction in 2008 has been exceptional, and the brand, already in 14 countries, continues to be fueled by great global momentum," said Simon Turner, President, Global Development, for Starwood. "To keep up with growing owner and guest demand around the world, we’ve developed a conversion-friendly strategy that allows our partners to reposition assets in a time and cost-effective manner while maintaining brand integrity, and grow not only through new builds, but also through conversions and adaptive re-use projects."
Mr. Turner continued: "We’ve seen first-hand how successful these projects can be with Aloft San Francisco Airport and Aloft Tucson University, which we converted. Both hotels benefit from Aloft Hotels’s ever-growing guest loyalty and the backing of Starwood’s powerful platforms, and have exceeded previous hotel performance in a very short time."
Aloft Hotels is picking up the pace of adaptive re-use projects with the recent opening of Aloft Tulsa Downtown and Aloft Miami - Brickell, and three more slated openings in 2013 and 2014: Aloft Orlando Downtown, Aloft Detroit Downtown and Aloft Tampa Downtown. Recent conversions include Aloft Nashville West End, Aloft San Francisco Airport, Aloft Silicon Valley, and Aloft Tucson University, along with the upcoming openings of Aloft Calgary University and Aloft Atlanta Downtown.
The Aloft innovative marketing partnerships and exclusive initiatives differentiate the brand from the competition in the specialty select category. From technology-forward Smart Check In – the only mobile check in that allows guests to completely bypass the front desk, an offering launched in North America that has surpassed 16,000 frequent guests enjoying its one-of-a-kind convenience – to its design-led focus, including a recent exclusive partnership with Design Within Reach (DWR), the iconic mid-century furniture design company, Aloft is the only hotel that authentically delivers a unique, vibrant guest experience. In addition, Aloft Hotel’s W XYZ bars offer live, free access to local emerging artists as well as some of the hottest bands in the country through its "Live at Aloft" concert series and Project Aloft Star, its emerging talent music competition, now in its fourth year.
With 75 hotels in 14 countries around the world, Starwood’s Aloft brand delivers a fresh approach to the traditional staid hotel landscape. For the ‘always on’ next generation of traveler, the Aloft brand offers a tech-forward, vibrant experience and a modern style that is different by design. For more information, please visit www.alofthotels.com. Aloft, like all brands within Starwood's portfolio, is proud to offer the Starwood Preferred Guest(R) program, the industry’s richest loyalty program. To learn more, please visit spg.com.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1,162 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.