STAMFORD, Conn - From the 2013 American Lodging Investment Summit in Los Angeles, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) announced today that it opened 23 hotels in North America in 2012 and signed more new deals than in the previous two years, including 21 conversions. Looking ahead to 2013, Starwood anticipates its strongest year of openings in North America since before the global economic crisis with 28 scheduled openings. Conversions will continue to fuel growth with in-the-year conversions expected to result in additional new hotel openings this year.
"North America remains our largest market with 576 hotels and saw more hotels signed in 2012 than any other region in our vast network," said Simon Turner, President of Global Development. "We have opened over 135 new hotels in North America since the global economic crisis and expect pent up demand and limited new supply to continue to drive our growth in 2013."
"There are a number of positive trends in the North American hospitality market and we expect more than one-third of Starwood's hotel openings around the world to be in the U.S. and Canada in 2013," said Allison Reid, Senior Vice President of North America Development, Starwood. "Our strong brands, global scale and presence, powerful systems and growing base of loyal customers continue to set Starwood apart from our competition. We are seeing increased interest among owners in initiating new hotels with Starwood especially around conversions."
Powered by Four Points by Sheraton and Aloft, Mid-Market Brands See Banner Year Ahead
Starwood's "Specialty Select" or Mid-Market brands, Four Points by Sheraton, Aloft and Element, will continue charging across North America in 2013. Fast-growing Four Points by Sheraton, with its popular positioning around comfort, style, and affordability, is expected to surpass 120 hotels in North America and 190 globally in 2013. Twelve openings in key markets will include hotels in Manhattan (KS), San Jose/Silicon Valley (CA), Columbus (OH), Richmond Airport (VA), Kansas City (MO), Charleston (WV), Louisville (KY) and Jacksonville (FL). In Canada, Four Points by Sheraton will debut in Kelowna, Nisku, Edmunston, and Regina. Over the past five years, the Four Points by Sheraton portfolio has surged by 15% in North America and the brand is now Starwood's third largest with the second-biggest global pipeline.
Aloft, Starwood's sizzling "style at a steal" brand, continues conquering markets wherever it plants a flag. This year, the brand will open its milestone 50th property in North America and 75th globally - and is on track to open nearly three times as many rooms this year as in 2012. Over the past three years, Aloft has grown its global portfolio by 67%, and expects to expand by another 25% in 2013. Aloft also signed eight deals in North America and an additional 17 globally during 2012 - the highest number since 2008. Conversions and adaptive-reuse projects continue helping Aloft meet demand from partners and developers to bring more properties online quicker. Conversions opening in 2013 include Aloft Tucson and Aloft Calgary University. Aloft opened two conversion projects in 2012: Aloft San Francisco Airport, its first internal conversion, and Aloft Nashville West End.
Element, Starwood's industry-leading "stylish and sustainable" brand, has built a base of fiercely loyal fans and will open its first property outside the U.S. this year with Element Vaughan Southeast in Ontario, Canada, to be followed by the debut of the brand in Europe in 2014.
Upper Upscale and Luxury Brands Enjoy Strong Position and Sustained Growth
Starwood's stronger-than-ever upper-upscale brands, Le Méridien, Westin and Sheraton, will also see sustained North America expansion in 2013. After significant brand investment and transformation, Le Méridien is experiencing strong growth momentum, with eight new hotel openings globally slated for 2013. Conversions continue to serve as a growth opportunity for Le Méridien, with recent conversion hotels having opened in Mexico City and Arlington, Virginia.
Westin, whose singular positioning around wellness continues powering global growth, will open four hotels in 2013 in the U.S.: The Westin Birmingham, The Westin San Jose, The Westin Sacramento, and The Westin Houston Downtown - the 4th Westin in that city. And Sheraton, one of the hotel industry's most revered brands and Starwood's largest brand in North America, boasts its strongest portfolio in its history. In 2012, Sheraton announced that the brand will enter the Dominican Republic in 2014 with the Sheraton Santo Domingo and the brand will also debut this year at Pittsburgh Airport. The company also recently announced that a new boutique hotel affiliated with the Sheraton brand will be developed adjacent to Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs.
Starwood continues to have, and build on, one of the strongest North America luxury portfolios in the industry with its St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, and W Hotels brands. In 2012, the company signed The St. Anthony, A Luxury Collection Hotel, San Antonio - an external conversion set to open in 2014 as the second Luxury Collection property in Texas. With 85 hotels in nearly 30 countries, The Luxury Collection remains Starwood's largest luxury brand, and with its appeal to independent hotel owners it continues to grow, increasing its global footprint by 70% since 2007. Starwood also celebrated the landmark opening of The St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort in 2012. W Hotels and its ownership groups have invested more than $100 million in updating the North American W portfolio, including the recent completion of renovations at W New Orleans - French Quarter, W San Diego, W Seattle, W San Francisco, and W New York - Union Square.
About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1,134 properties in nearly 100 countries and 154,000 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 ElementSM. 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.
(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.)