Hotel Online  Special Report


 Grande Equity Development Company Limited Signs Starwood's New
Brand Le Meridien to Manage 250 room Resort in Pattaya, Thailand
SINGAPORE - Feb. 14, 2006--Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) newest global hotel brand Le Meridien Hotels & Resorts, continues to expand its presence in Asia Pacific with the signing of Le Meridien Pattaya Resort, Thailand. Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Grande Equity Development Company Limited announced the agreement today to manage this brand new resort along Jomtien Beach in Pattaya, which will open in January 2009.

The Le Meridien Pattaya Resort will be part of one of Pattaya's foremost upscale beachfront resort developments, which comprises unbranded condominiums and the resort. The development is strategically located in a prime position, only 150 km or 1.5 hours' drive from Bangkok and less than an hour's drive from Bangkok's new International Airport when it officially opens in 2006. The resort will feature 250 rooms, 11,000 square feet of meeting space, three food and beverage outlets, an outdoor swimming pool and a full service spa.

"We are thrilled to be announcing a new Le Meridien hotel in Pattaya - especially as this is the first hotel signing in Asia Pacific for Le Meridien since they became part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts in late November 2005," said Michael Wale, Senior Vice President Le Meridien Operations. "This new resort further reinforces our commitment to grow and enhance our newest brand globally with particular emphasis in Asia-Pacific, Latin America and the United States. The brand has a healthy development pipeline already in place, with over 10 hotels planned to open in 2006 in destinations such as India and China, including Le Royal Meridien Shanghai. We see great potential for the Le Meridien brand and it is a perfect complement to the Starwood portfolio, with its European heritage, international footprint and unique guest culture."

"Le Meridien Pattaya Resort marks Starwood's second resort in Pattaya and its 17th in Thailand. This latest addition to the Le Meridien portfolio is an exciting and significant development for Starwood. Besides reflecting our focus to grow this brand, Le Meridien Pattaya Resort also strengthens Starwood's commitment to Thailand, while further expanding on the wonderful Le Meridien resorts we can offer our guests around the world," said Miguel Ko, President, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Asia Pacific.

Starwood currently operates 12 hotels in Thailand - Bangkok, Chiangmai, Samui, Pattaya, Krabi and Phuket, with 5 under development in Bangkok, Chiangmai, Pattaya, Phuket and Hua Hin.

Le Meridien Hotels & Resorts, with its portfolio of more than 120 luxury and upscale hotels in 49 countries worldwide, is owned by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. Le Meridien enjoys a strategic alliance with JAL-owned Nikko Hotels, providing loyal guests access to an additional 52 properties around the world. In the 2005 Luxury Brand Status Index survey Le Meridien was recognised as one of the top 15 luxury hotel brands. For more information, please visit

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with approximately 850 properties in more than 95 countries and 145,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood® Hotels is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels and resorts with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, Sheraton®, Westin®, Four Points® by Sheraton, W®, Le Meridien® and the recently announced Aloft(SM). Starwood Hotels also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., one of the premier developers and operators of high quality vacation interval ownership resorts. For more information, please visit

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. 

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Hwee-Peng Yeo, +65 6335 4837
Also See: Starwood to Open More Than 70 Hotels in the Next Two Years; Westin Fastest Growing Upper Upscale Brand in 2004 / February 2005
Starwood Reports Net Income for the 4th Qtr of 2005 Increased 59% to $159 million; For the Full Year 2005, Starwood's Earnings Up 7% to $422 million / Hotel Operating Statistics / February 2006

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