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Starwood Sheraton in Georgetown, TX

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Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. recently announced that it will open a hotel and a conference center within Summit at Rivery Park development in Georgetown, TX under its Sheraton brand. Slated to open in 2016, the hotel will be owned by Hines, an international real estate firm based in Houston, and The Novak Brothers under a joint venture.

This property will occupy a major chunk of Summit at Rivery Park, which is a mixed-use complex spread over an area of 32 acres. It is located on Rivery Boulevard and easily accessible from the hiking and biking trails in Rivery Park. Besides the hotel and conference center, this mixed-use complex will have residential townhomes, shops and office space.

This hotel and conference center will feature 224 guestrooms, a conference center spread over an area of 30,000 square feet, a signature restaurant, a destination bar, an outdoor pool and a fitness center. It will be close to shops, night clubs and other important destinations in the city.

According to Fortune Small Business magazine, Georgetown is the second best city to live and launch a new business. Taking these factors into account, we believe that the company took a right decision to open its hotel here. The strategic location along with the amenities and ambience make the hotel an ideal choice for business meetings, weddings and social functions. This is expected to attract a number of visitors including business and leisure travelers.

Starwood Hotels is consistently trying to expand its global presence. The company signed 152 hotel management and franchise deals in 2013, reflecting an increase of 16% year over year. This is the company’s highest number of hotel signings in the past six years.

Meanwhile, more than half of Starwood’s properties are situated outside the U.S., which give the company wide international exposure unlike any of its peers. With the rise in global travel demand, Starwood expects 2014 to be solid in terms of openings and new agreements. The company will continue to concentrate on fast-growing areas where demand is substantially high but supply remains limited.

Starwood carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Marriott International, Inc. (MAR - Free Report) is a better-ranked stock in the same industry with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Investors can also consider MGM Resorts International (MGM - Free Report) and Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS - Free Report) from the gaming industry. Both these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2.


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