Starwood Hotels Expands in Iraq

By John Lee.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide announced it has signed an agreement with BCD Co. to introduce its destination sensation brand, Aloft Hotels, to Iraq's emerging commercial hub. The opening of the new Aloft Erbil in 2015 will mark the launch of the Aloft brand into Iraq.

Created to shake up the traditional mid-market hotel sector, Aloft is redefining the category by delivering urban-influenced, modern and vibrant design and a social guest experience at an affordable price point. Earlier this year, Starwood marked a milestone with the signing of Sheraton Erbil will which signify the re-entry of Starwood in Iraq after 20 years.

"Together with BCD, we are excited to grow Starwood's presence in this emerging market as we bring Aloft Hotels to Iraq," said Roeland Vos, President, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Europe, Africa and Middle East. "Aloft Erbil marks our second collaboration with BCD and we look forward to introducing Aloft's vibrant, stylish yet affordable concept to the country."

Aloft Erbil will be a part of BCD's mixed-use complex which will also include a Sheraton hotel.

On the signing of Aloft Erbil, Mr. Saad Aldoski, Partner, BCD Co. commented:

"We are excited to sign our second hotel with Starwood and we look forward to developing this relationship further to contribute to the growing development of the tourism industry in the Kurdistan area and Iraq as a whole. Erbil is considered as one of the top emerging markets in the Middle East and we believe Aloft Erbil, with its modern style and great value, will create a new benchmark in the city."

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