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Design Miami/ Basel and W Hotels Worldwide Name Second Annual Award
Recipients of the "W Hotels Designers of the Future Award"

Milan, Italy (April 14, 2011) – W Hotels Worldwide continues its successful collaboration with Design Miami/ Basel with the announcement of the 2011 Designers of the Future Award.  This event marks the second occasion that the two organizations have collaborated on the award, having announced the coveted award along with their partnership at Salone del Mobile in Milan one year ago.

The Designers of the Future Award, originally launched by Design Miami/ Basel in 2006, recognizes young, emerging designers whose work reflects exceptional innovation and beauty in limited-edition design.  The winners named today will go on to present their work at Basel in June.  W Hotels, a leader in design and innovation, further backs the award by allowing for the award winners to carry out their legacy in various W Hotels around the world.

“We are very excited to take the partnership with Design Miami/ Basel and the W Hotels Designer of the Future Award into its second year,” said Eva Ziegler, Global Brand Leader of W Hotels Worldwide and Le Méridien. “Salone del Mobile exhibits the design world’s finest, and recognizing the W Hotels Designer of the Future here at the “Global Mecca of Design” is a great introduction to the next stage of their careers.”

The 2011 “W Hotels Designers of the Future Award” looks beyond traditional product and furniture design, seeking work that is truly groundbreaking and innovative.  This year, the recognized designers draw inspiration from “Conversation Pieces,” a theme provided to the design candidates by Design Miami/ Basel.  The 2011 Award winners include: UK-based designer Asif Khan, Austrian design team Mischer’Traxler, and Studio Juju in Singapore.

The 2011 Designers of the Future international jury was comprised of Wava Carpenter, Associate Director, Design Miami/; Aric Chen, Beijing Design Week; Li Edelkoort, Edelkoort Inc.; Marcus Fairs, Editor-in-Chief,; Alexis Georgacopoulos, Director of the Ecole cantonale d'art de Lausanne; Constance Rubini, School of Decorative Arts, Paris; Kenya Hara, Creative Director, Muji; Konstantin Grcic, KGID; Zoe Ryan, Art Institute of Chicago; and Mike Tiedy, SVP, Global Brand Design & Innovation, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc,  the parent company of W Hotels.

2010 W Hotels Designer of the Future Awards were presented to Beta Tank, Graham Hudson, rAndom International, and Zigelbaum + Coelho.  W Hotels created a global platform for these designers, helping them take their work from a conceptual stage to a level where they can expose their work to consumers and design enthusiasts alike.  The winners traveled to W locations across the globe during key design weeks, setting up on-site installations at W Barcelona, W Doha and showcasing their work at Istanbul Design week.

Zigelbaum + Coelho and rAndom International, were also integrated at the W Taipei Premiere Event (=W Taipei’s Grand Openning Event) in March 2011, where  rAndom International created a permanent installation for this hotel.  For the months ahead Zigelbaum + Coelho has been commissioned for the St. Petersburg Premiere Event in June 2011.

When the W brand opened its first hotel in New York in 1998, it transformed the meaning of hotels and established itself as the clear leader in the contemporary lifestyle hotel space.  W Hotels strives for cutting-edge, future-forward design, inspired by the location and executed through unique collaborations with upcoming and well-known creative talents. From the Ottoman-referenced glam of a jewel box of W Istanbul to the design inspired by the dual personality of the British man at the recently-opened W London - Leicester Square, each new W Hotel is guided by Starwood’s in-house design team and is then fueled and delivered by a unique collaboration between designers, architects, graphic designers, photographers, stylists and W’s Global Fashion and Music Directors.

The W brand’s global growth fosters opportunities for new design partnerships with established as well as upcoming designers.  For W St. Petersburg, which will mark the debut of W Hotels in Russia when it opens this spring, W partnered with acclaimed architects and designers Antonio Citterio & Partners to blend contemporary style with Russia’s elegant traditions. The first W Hotel in Paris, W Paris - Opera debuts in early 2012 with interiors by Rockwell Group Europe (RGe).  Diego Gronda, Managing and Creative Director of RGe, the Madrid satellite office of New York’s Rockwell Group founded by David Rockwell, is leading the design, which takes its inspiration from Paris, the City of Light, combined with the energy of New York, where W Hotels was born resulting into a creative idea called “The Spark”.

These new hotels join the W brand’s already prestigious European and Middle Eastern portfolio, which includes W Istanbul by architect/designer Geomim and W Doha Hotel & Residences, which merges traditional Arabian imagery with the signature contemporary cool of W Hotels, by London-based United Designers. The W brand’s European flagship and first hotel in Western Europe, W Barcelona, was designed by Ricardo Bofill and is already established as a modern-day landmark with its signature full-sail architectural shape.

Rounding out the brand’s stellar design partner roster is Clodagh (W Fort Lauderdale); Tony Chi (W Santiago); Glamorous Corp. and g+a (W Hong Kong); Graft (W New York - Downtown); Yabu Pushelberg (W New York - Times Square renovation); Thom Filicia (W Atlanta – Buckhead and W San Diego and W Los Angeles - Westwood renovations); Patricia Uriquola (W Retreat & Spa - Vieques Island).

About W Hotels Worldwide
W Hotels is a contemporary, design-led lifestyle brand and the industry innovator with 41 hotels and retreats in the most vibrant cities and exotic destinations around the world. Inspiring, iconic, innovative and influential, W Hotels provides the ultimate in insider access, offering a unique mix of cutting-edge design and passions around fashion, music and entertainment. W Hotels offers a holistic lifestyle experience that is integrated into the brand’s sensibility through contemporary restaurant concepts, glamorous entertainment experiences, stylish retail concepts and signature spas. With more than 12 years of proven success, W Hotels is on track to reach more than 50 hotels by the end of 2012. W Hotels and W Retreats have been announced for Paris, St. Petersburg, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Abu Dhabi, Bangkok, Athens – Astir Palace, and Verbier, among other international destinations.  For more information, visit

About Design Miami/
Design Miami/ is the most prominent and substantive forum for collectible design, representing a convergence of commerce and culture. Its annual shows in Basel, Switzerland (June) and Miami, USA (December) bring together the most influential galleries, collectors, designers, critics and curators from around the world. For more information please visit

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1025 properties in 100 countries and territories with 145,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood Hotels 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, and the recently launched Aloft®, and Element 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

Note: This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities regulations. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated at the time the forward-looking statements are made. Further results, performance and achievements may be affected by general economic conditions, including the duration and severity of any global or regional economic downturns, the availability of financing alternatives at acceptable terms, the impact of war and terrorist activity, business and financing conditions, foreign exchange fluctuations, cyclicality of the real estate (including residential) and the hotel and vacation ownership businesses, operating risks associated with the hotel, vacation ownership and residential businesses. These risks and uncertainties are presented in detail in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Further, there can be no assurance that agreements will be entered into for the hotels in the Company's pipeline and, if entered into, the timing of any agreement and the opening of the related hotel. 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 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.

Media Contacts:

Flint Beamon
Katherine Hurd
PR Consulting

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Also See: With Design at the Forefront, W Hotels Worldwide Prepares to Open Six New Distinctively Designed Hotels in 2011 / February 2011

First W Hotel in Southeast Asia Opens with the All Villa W Retreat Koh Samui on the North Shore of Thailand’s Samui Island / November 2010

W Hotels Partners with Design Miami/ Basel; Designers of the Future Award Renamed “W Hotels Designers of the Future Award” / April 2010

W Hotels Appoints Coetzer Deysel as General Manager of W Retreat - Koh Samui, Thailand / April 2010

Langham Hotels International Signs Management Contract with Gurich Company in Koh Samui, Thailand to Open Designer Boutique Resort in November 2009 / July 2009

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