Starwood Unveils New Branding at First Media Summit

On Tuesday, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide held its first Media Summit in New York, revealing new brand definitions and enhancements for its eight hotel chains: Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, St. Regis, Luxury Collection, aloft, Westin, W Hotels and Le Meridien. Over the last 12 months, Steve Heyer, CEO, says the company has sharply defined its brands, built a new service culture, announced two new brands (aloft and Project Extended Stay by Westin) as well as acquired and integrated Le Meridien. Sheraton, which will promote its core values of "warm, comforting connections," will offer guests a prepaid post card upon check in and will roll out the Yahoo! Link at Sheraton lobby experience with Internet work stations, flat screen TVs and board games. Four Points by Sheraton announced a new Times Square property set to open in 2008 while St. Regis announced the launch of a new e-butler service that will debut on June 1. Guests will be given their butler's e-mail address to communicate for such requests as dinner reservations or spa appointments. Additionally, Westin is testing Phase 2 of its Sensory Welcome Experience. Phase 1—which includes signature scents, sounds, lighting and botanicals—will be rolled out to all hotels worldwide by the end of June. Phase 2 will entail a host in the lobby of every hotel offering guests hot or cold towels and a travel elixir. The official name of Westin's new extended stay brand will be unveiled in September along with the first location.

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