Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.® (NYSE:HOT) and its new destination sensation brand, Aloft® Hotels, today announces the signing of Aloft London ExCeL. Scheduled to open in advance of the London Olympics in 2012, this 252 room hotel will be located at ExCeL London, the international exhibition & convention centre in the Docklands area of the city. Created to shake up the staid, traditional select service segment of the hotel industry, Aloft delivers urban-influenced, open and vibrant design and a social guest experience at an affordable price point.
The sleek new Aloft London ExCeL is being developed by ExCeL London’s parent company, Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), also owners of Aloft Abu Dhabi, the Middle East’s first Aloft hotel, which is located adjacent to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. Aloft London ExCeL will mark the brand’s UK debut and will be the second Aloft property in Europe following the Aloft Brussels Schuman, scheduled to open this Autumn.
His Excellency Sheikh Sultan Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, ADNEC’s Chairman said, “ADNEC is committed to innovation as evidenced by our decision to partner with Starwood Hotels & Resorts to introduce a new hospitality brand to the UK. Aloft London ExCeL will support ExCeL’s growing events calendar and the London Olympics by providing quality, stylish and affordable accommodation.”
Ten years after Starwood Hotels & Resorts shook up the hotel industry with the launch of W Hotels, the innovative hotel giant has once again reinvented hotel design with its new brand, Aloft. Featuring loft-like guest rooms, a buzzing bar scene in the open lobby, a grab-and go café and industrial design elements throughout, Aloft delivers urban-influenced, modern and vibrant design and an energetic guest experience at an affordable price point.
The signing of Aloft London ExCeL is part of a strategic international expansion of the Aloft brand. After opening its first hotel in June 2008 in Canada, Aloft has since grown to almost 50 hotels strong in four countries – the United States, China, Canada and the United Arab Emirates. This year, Aloft will continue its global growth with slated debut openings in Belgium, India and Thailand followed by the second Aloft for the Middle East, the Aloft Riyadh, which is scheduled to open in 2011.
“The debut of Aloft in key European hubs such as London underscores the power of the Aloft brand and the strength of Starwood’s global relationships with experienced hotel developers. We have a strong partnership with ADNEC through the Aloft Abu Dhabi.” Said Michael Wale, Senior Vice President, North West Europe, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Europe, Africa and Middle East. “In addition to the signing of Aloft London ExCeL, this year Starwood will launch the W brand in the UK with the opening of W London-Leicester Square. These developments further highlight Starwood’s commitment to growth in the UK market.”
First-time visitors will immediately understand that Aloft is different from any other hotel experience. Aloft guest rooms, designed by Rockwell Group, feature the brand’s signature ceilings of nearly three metres high, oversized windows and an ultra-comfortable bed, as well as roomy walk-in showers. Each Aloft room is equipped with complimentary wireless Internet access and a one-stop connectivity solution for multiple-electronic gadgetry, all linked to a 42” flat-panel, HDTV-ready television making it a combination high-tech office and entertainment centre in one.
The Aloft London ExCeL will also offer atmospheric public spaces where guests can mix and mingle, read the paper, work on laptops, play a game of pool or grab a drink with friends at the re:mixSM communal lobby area and w xyzSM bar. In addition, the hotel will boast re:fuel by Aloft, a one-stop, 24-hour grab & go food and beverage area, offering sweet, savoury and healthy food, snacks and beverages. The re:chargeSM fitness centre and splash pool will give travellers options to de-stress and re-energise.
Kevin Murphy, CEO, ExCeL London comments: “We have been working very closely with Starwood to bring the Aloft brand to London. The Aloft London ExCeL will provide today’s forward-thinking travellers with a space that is open to design and open to possibilities, and the arrival of this hip, new hotel concept will offer our customers a unique guest experience. Opening at the end of 2011, in time for the 2012 Olympics and our ever expanding calendar, the Aloft will add a further 252 bedrooms to our onsite offer.”
The London Docklands area is to be the focus of much investment over the next two years in preparation for the 2012 Olympic Games. The hotel will be located at ExCeL’s Eastern entrance at the Royal Victoria Dock and will have direct covered access to Prince Regent Station on the Docklands Light Railway and London’s first International Convention Centre. ExCeL is London’s largest conference and exhibition centre and is within easy reach of London City Airport and Canary Wharf.