Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) and Xeresa Golf S.A. have announced the signing of a long-term management agreement under which Starwood will operate the 236-room Sheraton Real de Faula Hotel & Spa and the 224-room Westin Real de Faula Hotel & Spa in Benidorm, Spain.
Located adjacent to the Terra Mitica theme park in Benidorm, Spain, along the Costa Blanca coast, near the city of Alicante, both hotels are currently under construction and are slated to open in January 2005. The resort is inspired by Valencian architectural traditions with open plan buildings of low height and low density. The development will reflect a typical Mediterranean village with its history and life, while providing the latest technologies and international service levels. The development has been designed by renowned Spanish architect Andres Pineiro.
The Costa Blanca is also one of Europe`s oldest and most developed resort destinations due to its temperate year-round climate, excellent beaches and many leisure facilities. Recent developments such as the Terra Mitica theme park and further infrastructure improvements are re-invigorating the destination as it positions itself for the 21st century.
In addition to the new hotels, the resort will include a meeting and convention center incorporating nearly 25,000 square feet of meeting space and several themed food and beverage outlets located throughout the resort. There will be a full-service spa and health club, indoor/outdoor swimming pools and six tennis courts. In addition, guests of both the Sheraton and The Westin Real de Faula will have priority booking for tee times at the two18-hole Jack Nicklaus golf courses that are also under development by Xeresa Golf SA., adjacent to the hotels that will include one championship course, one executive course and a golf school.
“This agreement is yet another sign of the commitment we have to the development and operation of hotels in Spain where we already operate eight hotels and we will soon open four more,” commented Roeland Vos, President of the Europe, Africa and Middle East Division of Starwood Hotels & Resorts. “With their high quality products and configuration, the Sheraton and The Westin Real de Faula will position the resort at the top end of the local market and are well within the category of Spain`s most upscale regional resorts. We acknowledge Xeresa Golf`s vision and express our appreciation for their trust in our brands as we proceed in this first, outstanding partnership.”
The construction of both hotels incorporates an ecological commitment including the use of renewable energies, optimal consumption of water, and recycling of sewage water for irrigation of the golf courses. Real de Faula is being developed on approximately 395 acres, with an estimated investment of approximately USD $98 million. Construction on the resort began in 2001.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with more than 750 properties in more than 80 countries and 105,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. With internationally renowned brands, Starwood is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels and resorts including: St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, Sheraton, Westin, Four Points by Sheraton, W brands, as well as Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., one of the premier developers and operators of high quality vacation interval ownership resorts. For more information, please visit www.starwood.com.