WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., October 20, 2008 – Starwood Hotels & Resorts today announces that a live inventory of its small meeting rooms is now available for real-time booking at www.worktopia.com. The new partnership with Worktopia went into effect Sept. 25, 2008, and begins with 63 properties in Starwood’s Southeastern U.S. Region, with plans to introduce additional Starwood destinations in the near future. The collaboration is designed to help Starwood increase sales of unused small meeting rooms (those that accommodate fewer than 100 attendees), as well as overnight guest rooms through an online marketplace that reaches thousands of meeting planners around the clock.
Worktopia’s Universal Meeting Solution (UMS) makes it the first company to provide a completely automated process for meeting planners to search, compare and book space for small meetings online. The industry-leading technology behind UMS also allows planners to arrange for catering, A/V equipment and guest rooms, all in a single online session. In addition, UMS provides planners with attendee management capabilities, powered by SignUp4, detailed meeting activity reports and online meeting attendee enrollment tools.
“We anticipate that our partnership with Worktopia will add to the bottom line by bringing better utilization of our Southeastern properties’ smaller meeting rooms,” comments Sean Brevick, Field Marketing Director Southeast and Caribbean Region Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide. “What’s more, by relying on Worktopia’s online marketing and booking solutions to fill our small meeting rooms and drive sales of last-minute inventory, our own sales people can focus their efforts on larger, longer-lead meetings opportunities.”
Adds Brian McCabe, Executive Vice President of Worktopia, “We are delighted to add Starwood’s meeting facilities to our growing portfolio of small meeting sites. This new partnership offers real benefits to our corporate customers, adding 63 new properties to the range of small-meetings options available to them on demand. At the same time, it also promises to maximize profit potential for Starwood’s small meetings business.”
About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with approximately 900 properties in more than 100 countries and 155,000 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 Meridien, Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, and the recently launched AloftSM, 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 www.starwoodhotels.com.
About Worktopia —
Worktopia, Inc. offers integrated solutions that allow meeting planners to search, compare and book simple meetings and group accommodations online in hotels, business centers and airport lounges worldwide. Worktopia’s solutions also serve the needs of corporate executives, by providing new visibility into what their companies are spending on simple meetings, facilitating control, compliance and cost reduction efforts. The Worktopia meetings booking engine can be found at www.worktopia.com, in private label versions, and in TMC corporate booking tools and GDS agency desktops. Worktopia also delivers attendee management services in partnership with SignUp4.com. For more information, visit www.worktopia.com