NEW YORK (AP) -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. said Thursday it plans to open four luxury hotels in China by the end of the year to cater to the growing number of wealthy Chinese travelers.
The properties opening are The St. Regis Chengdu, The Azure Qiantang in Hangzhou, The Castle Hotel in Dalian and the W Beijing - Chang'an. The four hotels have a total of 1,129 high-end guestrooms.
"The rapid growth of Starwood's luxury brands in China reflects a robust demand for high-end hospitality from an increasingly affluent market, where domestic travel continues to thrive," said Paul James, who oversees Starwood's luxury brands.
This year, the Stamford, Connecticut, company plans to open a total of 21 hotels from its nine brands in China. Starwood's other brands include Westin, Le Méridien and Sheraton. It operates 1,200 properties around the world.
Starwood shares rose 39 cents to $81 in morning trading Thursday.
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