Aloft Announces Plans for First Hotel Conversion Project
Aloft Turns to Conversions to Meet Global Demand from Partners, Developers, Consumers
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced the first conversion of an existing hotel to its "style-at-a-steal" Aloft brand, launching a new phase of growth for one of the world's most talked-about hotel brands.
"Building on the success of adaptive reuse projects like the award-winning Aloft Dallas Downtown, a former railroad depot, we've developed a conversion-friendly strategy for existing hotels to meet owner and guest demand for the brand while helping our partners reposition existing assets in a cost-effective manner," said Simon Turner, President of Global Development for Starwood. "We believe that many well-located, older hotels in metro markets represent enormous untapped repositioning potential. With the right capital investment and the backing of Starwood's powerful platforms, these assets will benefit from Aloft's ever-growing guest loyalty."
Aloft San Francisco Airport occupies a prime location adjacent to San Francisco International Airport (SFO), one of the world's busiest travel hubs. The property's strategic location, along with proximity to mass-transit options into San Francisco, made it an ideal choice for a conversion for Starwood. "We see two types of opportunities as ideal candidates for an Aloft conversion: older hotels in need of a major renovation, and unique independent boutique hotels seeking a stronger brand point of view and the ability to utilize Starwood systems," Turner said.
For consumers, who have made Aloft one of the world's most prized hospitality brands, conversions will mean access to the brand in more places, according to Brian McGuinness, Senior Vice President of Specialty Select Brands for Starwood. "The Aloft brand has developed a fiercely loyal following – consumers constantly ask us to bring the brand to more cities," he said. "Conversions are exciting from a brand standpoint because they allow us to bring the Aloft experience to new markets more quickly, which can only enhance its already-powerful growth."
Pioneering initiatives in pop culture, design, and technology have positioned Aloft as a must-have brand for Gen Y travelers. Aloft has reported consistently high guest satisfaction scores since launch, reflecting the success of its modern and vibrant design at an affordable price point. Aloft's social guest experience, with the buzzing re:mix lounge and happening w xyz bar, have earned select hotels within the portfolio designations on TripAdvisor's 2011 "Top 10 Trendiest Hotels in the US" and "Top 10 Trendiest Hotels in the World" rankings lists.
The Aloft hotel will become the third Starwood property adjacent to San Francisco International Airport, joining The Westin San Francisco Airport and Four Points by Sheraton Hotel & Suites San Francisco Airport.
About Aloft Hotels
With more than 50 hotels open in the three years since Aloft first arrived on the scene, Aloft can be found everywhere from Abu Dhabi and Baltimore to Dallas and Beijing and everywhere in between. 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, which offers a breakthrough policy of no blackout dates on Free Night Awards. To learn more, please visit www.spg.com.
Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with more than 1,300 properties in some 100 countries and approximately 188,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, resorts and residences under the renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®,Tribute Portfolio™, Four Points® by Sheraton, Aloft®, and Element®, along with an expanded partnership withDesign Hotels™. The company also boasts one of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®). Visit www.starwoodhotels.com for more information and stay connected @starwoodbuzz on Twitterand Instagram and facebook.com/Starwood.
Starwood Hotels &