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In order to boost its domestic portfolio, leading hotelier Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. (HOT - Analyst Report) is set to unveil two properties under its Four Points by Sheraton and Element brands in New York City borough of Queens, NY. Christened Four Points by Sheraton Flushing and Element Flushing, the hotels are slated to open for business in Sep 2015.
Starwood is going to develop these properties in association with Century Construction Group. Ideally situated at Flushing, the north-central region of the New York City borough of Queens, the properties will be in proximity to LaGuardia Airport, midtown Manhattan and several other popular destinations. We believe that these properties, boasting a total of 296 guestrooms along with various other amenities, will create a strong guest base, going ahead.
New York City is one of the most sought-after locations in the U.S. and hosts more than 50 million tourists each year. The city being one of the prime destinations for both leisure and business travelers, we believe the opening of these properties is a strategic one.
While Four Points by Sheraton Flushing will mark the opening of the fourth property under the brand in New York City, Element Flushing will be the second Element-branded hotel in the city.
Both the brands belong to Starwood’s select-service category – Specialty Select Brands –particularly designed for catering to the needs of the mid-market segment. Both the brands’ concept is in sync with the preference of modern travelers who seek a unique experience.
Launched in Jan 1995, Starwood’s third-largest brand, Four Points, currently owns as many as 175 properties across 30 countries. In its nearly 20 years of operation, this brand has performed satisfactorily in terms of guest satisfaction, reflecting the brand’s strength and growing popularity.
Four Points, which has the second-largest pipeline within Starwood, intends to enhance its portfolio by 40% by 2018. With the latest opening, the company has moved a step toward fulfilling its dream of operating 200 Sheraton properties by the end of 2014.
The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certified upscale, eco-sustained contemporary brand, Element, first appeared in 2008. Currently, the brand boasts as many as 11 hotels across the U.S. and has nearly seven properties in the pipeline.
Owing to a gradual economic recovery, system-wide occupancies in North America appear to be pretty steady and above the prior peak level achieved in 2006. Moreover, management expects overall new supply in developed markets of North America to remain well below historic rates of growth. These factors justify the company’s decision to expand in the U.S.
Some other hoteliers which are going to perform well, going ahead, include, Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corp. (VAC - Snapshot Report), Hyatt Hotels Corp. (H - Snapshot Report) and China Lodging Group, Ltd (HTHT - Snapshot Report). All the stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).