Starwood's Luxury Brand in Thailand

Zacks

In order to give a boost to its spread in Thailand, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. (HOT) recently unveiled a Luxury Collection Resort under its The Luxury Collection brand in Koh Samui, Thailand. Christened  Vana Belle, the new property marks the opening of third “The Luxury Collection” branded hotel in Thailand.

Strategically positioned at Chaweng Noi Beach, the hotel is 80 kilometers away from the southern coast in Koh Samui and in proximity to Samui International Airport. Vana Belle will offer 80 guest suites and villas along with various other amenities such as Vana Spa, fitness center, restaurants and Luxury Collection Concierge service.

Management believes that Thailand is a strategic fit for new properties, as it is an important tourist destination. Apart from the recently opened The Luxury Collection branded hotel, Starwood has two other resorts in the region including Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit in Bangkok and The Naka Island Resort & Spa in Phuket.

The Luxury Collection is an upscale brand of Starwood, which currently owns nearly 85 hotels globally with about 20 properties in Asia. The company has an established resort business in South Asia, especially in Koh Samui, Phuket, Langkawi, Bali and Maldives.

The company is set to expand its resort portfolio further with the introduction of The Castle Hotel in Dalian, China, Palacio del Inka in Cusco, Peru and the Ajman Palace in the United Arab Emirates.

Starwood currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The company has recently reported fourth-quarter 2012 adjusted earnings from continuing operations of 70 cents, breezing past the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a nickel, but slightly below the year-ago level of 71 cents. Revenues increased 0.1% year over year to $1,533 million in the quarter, with a modest rise in revenue per available room (RevPAR) in all regions.

Another hotel company Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (WYN) recently declared its fourth quarter 2012 adjusted earnings of 63 cents per share, ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 60 cents per share and up 34% year over year. Wyndham currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

There are various other hoteliers who are also trying to expand their businesses further including Choice Hotels International Inc. (CHH) and The Marcus Corporation (MCS). Both carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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