STAMFORD, Conn. - April 10, 2014 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.® (NYSE:HOT) today announced the grand opening of Aloft Atlanta Downtown, the first Aloft hotel in the state of Georgia. Owned by Tampa-based DeBartolo Development, LLC, and managed by Atlanta-based Banyan Investment Group, the 10-story property in downtown Atlanta underwent a multi-million dollar transformation prior to conversion. Aloft Atlanta Downtown offers 254 spacious, loft-like rooms, forward-thinking technology and a vibrant, social atmosphere.
"We are thrilled that Aloft has arrived in Atlanta, the largest economic and cultural center in the South, and expect that this new Aloft hotel will energize the downtown lodging market by offering an appealing new option for the next generation of travelers," said Brian McGuinness, Senior Vice President, Specialty Select Brands for Starwood. "We were delighted to work with DeBartolo Development on the successful conversion and repositioning of this hotel. Conversions represent an important growth channel for the Aloft brand, especially in mature metropolitan markets."
Located immediately adjacent to the Merchandise Mart in the heart of Atlanta's business district, Aloft Atlanta Downtown is easily accessible from Interstate 75/85 and close to the offices of numerous Fortune 500 companies, as well as the campuses of Georgia State University and Emory University. Nearby attractions include Georgia Aquarium, the World of Coca Cola, Atlantic Civic Center and Centennial Olympic Park. Hotel amenities include the W XYZ® bar featuring live music performances, a Splash swimming pool in hotel's outdoor backyard, a 24-hour fitness center and more than 2,500 square feet of flexible meeting space, ideal for both business and social events.
"Aloft will deliver a fresh, innovative approach to the hotel landscape in downtown Atlanta," said Edward Kobel, President and Chief Operating Office of DeBartolo Development. "Starwood has a tremendous track record of developing strong brands that resonate with consumers and successful partnerships with owners. We look forward to growing our partnership with Starwood."
"This vibrant, landmark hotel is well-positioned to emerge as a favorite with business travelers, visitors and area professionals," said Lloyd Crabtree, Senior Vice President of Operations for Banyan Investment Group. "The convenient location in the heart of so many business and leisure destinations further adds to our high profile and high impact."
Aloft's innovative and exclusive initiatives set it apart. Aloft recently announced that select properties will roll out Smart Check In, allowing guests to use their smartphones to check in to the hotel and open their guestroom door. This follows on the heels of the first phase of Smart Check-In, the first mobile check-in using RFID technology to truly bypass the front desk. In addition, Aloft offers live, free access to local emerging artists as well as some of the hottest bands with Live at Aloft Hotels programming at the W XYZ® bars.
With 100 hotels open now and coming soon 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 nearly 1,200 properties in 100 countries, and 181,400 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.
Built on a legacy of more than six decades, the DeBartolo name is recognized as an icon in the real estate industry. Since its beginnings in 1944 when legendary entrepreneur Edward J. DeBartolo, Sr. pioneered the first shopping mall concept and developed some of the most well-known and nationally-recognized shopping landmarks, the company's legacy has been synonymous with success. Continuing the family tradition with the same entrepreneurial spirit, Edward J. DeBartolo, Jr., former owner of the five-time Super Bowl Champion San Francisco 49ers and two-time Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins, and his brother, Edward Kobel, have evolved DeBartolo Development into one of the largest private real estate investment and development companies in the country. Today, DeBartolo Development invests in real estate assets of all sizes and scopes, specializing in opportunistic acquisitions and market-driven, ground-up development of multifamily, hospitality, retail and mixed-use projects throughout the United States. DeBartolo Development combines experience, sound research and market foresight with institutional partnerships and strong lender and broker relationships to meet the unique challenges of today's real estate environment. For more information, please visit www.debartolodevelopment.com.
Banyan Investment Group is a privately-owned hotel investment company which operates a portfolio of 20 properties. Banyan opened an office in Atlanta in 2009 to effectively and aggressively pursue development opportunities in the region and the metropolitan area. It acquired its first Atlanta-area hotel in 2010 -- a Country Inn & Suites in the suburb of Lithia Springs. Based in Miramar Beach on the Florida Gulf Coast, the company has more than 35 years of experience in developing and managing branded limited service hotels. For more information about Banyan Investment Group, visit the www.banyan-ig.com website.
SOURCE Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Peter G. Mathon
Banyan Investment Group
Starwood Hotels & Resorts