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Nine Legendary Luxury European Hotels
Join The Westin Brand
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., March 2000 - Nine legendary hotels in Europe today join Westin Hotels & Resorts, more than doubling the brand’s presence in Europe. 

Hotels joining Westin include: the Hotel Palace in Milan, the Hotel Excelsior in Rome, the Hotel Excelsior in Florence, the Hotel Europa & Regina in Venice, the Hotel Excelsior in Venice Lido, the Hotel Palace in Madrid, the Hotel Alfonso XIII in Seville, the Hotel Maria Cristina in San Sebastian and the Hotel Bristol in Vienna.
 

“With these legendary hotels we are significantly expanding Westin in Europe, allowing us to grow on the continent with one of the strongest worldwide upscale/luxury brands in the industry. Westin’s pre-eminent brand leadership coupled with the power of its global distribution systems will enhance these hotels’ commercial potential, while at the same time maintaining their reputation for the very best in luxurious facilities and unrivalled customer service,” said Robert F. Cotter, Chief Operating Officer for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (parent company of Westin). 

“These hotels are an integral part of the history and culture of the destinations in which they are located and over the past few years we have spent well over $100 million restoring these historic hotels to their original grandeur,” added Starwood Europe President Roeland Vos.  “Starwood has created an environment in these hotels that significantly exceeds the expectations of the most demanding international clientele, and now it’s time to add in the global power and reach of the Westin brand. Each of these hotels is the market leader in the upscale category in its own right, with world class standards in terms of product facilities, amenities and guest services.” 



The Westin Excelsior, Florence 

Excelsior origins date back to the 13th century and the works of the Umiliati order of Monks, the land and buildings later became the palatial homes of a number of the great families of Florence and were probably first used as hotels in the mid nineteenth century, becoming one hotel under the ownership of the Swiss Hotelier Gerardo Kraft in 1912. The hotel has recently undergone an extensive restoration programme with special attention paid to retaining 19th century features of the building and the use of the raw materials and traditional arts of Tuscany.

Hotel Bristol, A Westin Hotel: Karntner Ring, 1 - Vienna, Austria 1015 
The 140-room hotel, located opposite the Vienna State Opera House, is a landmark of elegance in Austria’s capital city. 
The Westin Excelsior, Florence: Piazza Ognissanti, 3 - Florence Italy 
Close to the Ponte Vecchio, Uffizi Gallery and Pitti Palace, the 168-room hotel combines luxurious modern accommodations with seven centuries of Florentine history. 
The Westin Palace, Milan: Piazza della Repubblica, 20 - Milan, Italy 
Minutes from Milan’s Duomo and the glass-domed Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, the 216-room Westin offers attentive service in a setting of Renaissance opulence. 
The Westin Excelsior, Rome: Via Vittorio Veneto, 125 - Rome, Italy 00187 
The 321-room property on Rome’s most celebrated avenue, Via Veneto, boasts rich custom fabrics, Empire-style furnishings and walls and ceilings hand- decorated by master artisans. 
The Westin Europa & Regina, Venice: San Marco, 2159 - Venice, Italy 
On the Grand Canal just steps from St. Mark’s Square, the 185-room centuries-old hotel reflects its sumptuous past with many fine details including precious marble, elegant damasks and magnificent stucco work. 
The Westin Excelsior, Venice Lido: Lungomare Marconi, 41 - Venice Lido
Overlooking the beach just a short boat ride from Piazza San Marco, the 196-room Westin offers the charms of Venice’s Lido from the casino to its exclusive private beaches. 
The Westin Palace, Madrid: Plaza de las Cortes, 7 - Madrid, Spain 28014 
In the heart of Madrid, opposite the Prado and Thyssen Bornemisza museums, the 465-room property is a monument to elegance combining turn-of-the- century grandeur with high-tech touches of a modern, world-class hotel. 
Hotel Maria Cristina, A Westin Hotel: Calle Oquendo, 1 - San Sebastian 
Home to the International Film Festival, and just blocks from the beach and a short drive from the Guggenheim Bilbao Museum, the 136-room hotel is surrounded by promenades and gardens, and many rooms offer views of the sea and Urumea River. 
Hotel Alfonso XIII, A Westin Hotel: San Fernando, 2 - Seville, Spain 
Named for the king who commissioned it in 1928, the 146-room hotel was designed to be Europe’s most luxurious hotel. Situated among the arches and arabesques of the historic city center, the hotel is a regal presence just minutes from the Reales Alcazares and Plaza de Espana. 

These properties join existing European Westin hotels including: the luxurious Trianon Palace, A Westin Hotel in Versailles, France; the world famous Turnberry Hotel, Golf Courses & Spa, A Westin Resort in Scotland; The Westin Grand in Berlin; The Westin Bellevue in Dresden, Germany; and The Westin Dragonara Resort in Malta. 

“By growing Westin’s current European collection with these nine luxury hotels, loyal Westin customers from all over the world will find the preferred choice for lodging in each of these important leisure and business destinations,” remarked Cotter.

Westin continues to expand in Europe, with the June 2000 opening of The Westin Rotterdam, The Netherlands, the Sept. 2000 opening of The Westin La Quinta Golf Resort in Marbella, Spain, and the April 2001 opening of The Westin Dublin, Ireland. With these new additions, Westin’s European coverage will more than triple in locations this year - making it the fastest growing upscale brand on the continent. Target markets for continued Westin growth include: London, Paris, Frankfurt, Barcelona, Budapest, Hamburg, Istanbul, Prague, Amsterdam, Dusseldorf, Munich and Jerusalem. 

###
Contact:
K.C. Kavanagh for Starwood, 
914-640-8339
kc.kavanagh@starwoodhotels.com
Also See: Robert Cotter Assumes Responsibility for all Starwood Hotels Resorts Operations; Replaces Brenda Barnes, Interim COO / Feb 2000 
20 Historical and Architectural Significant Hotels Added to National Trust Historic Hotels of America / Oct 1999 
Sol Meliá Will Manage the Meliá Roma Aurelia Owned by the Aurelia Centro Company / Nov 1999 

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