By Andy Sambidge
Agreement with Al Ain Club Investment Co will see 172-room property opening in 2016
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide has signed an agreement with Al Ain Club Investment Company to open a new 172-room Aloft hotel in the emirate.
Scheduled to debut in 2016, Aloft Al Ain will be the second Aloft hotel in the UAE joining Aloft Abu Dhabi, which opened in 2009, and it will the first Starwood hotel to open in Al Ain.
Aloft Al Ain will be an integral part of the city's 500,000 sq m mixed-use development around the 25,000-seater Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium.
The development will include office space, residential units, sports and family entertainment areas, retail shops and food and beverage venues.
"I would like to thank Al Ain Club Investment Company for putting their trust in Starwood as we bring the Aloft brand to Al Ain, furthering the brand's footprint in the UAE," said Michael Wale, president, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Europe, Africa and Middle East.
"Starwood recently celebrated the opening of its 75th Aloft hotel and we see huge potential for this stylish, affordable mid-market brand to grow in the UAE and throughout the Middle East."
Kareem Nagy Hassan, CEO, Al Ain Club Investment Company, added: "Our aim is to create a pioneering entertainment and tourism destination, especially for sport enthusiasts and families, in Al Ain.
"With the stadium as the central hub, the new master plan will provide an exclusive combination of living, working and healthy lifestyle in one location and it is only fitting that we have Starwood's Aloft Al Ain as our flagship hotel."
Aloft Al Ain will offer 172 rooms, including two presidential suites. The hotel will also feature an all-day dining restaurant and a cigar lounge, as well as two meeting spaces.
Starwood currently operates nearly 50 hotels in the Middle East, with plans to open over 30 hotels in the next few years.
The company currently operates an Aloft hotel in Abu Dhabi and is set to open another four new Aloft hotels in the region in the next three years in Al Ain and Sharjah in the UAE, Riyadh in Saudi Arabia and Erbil in Iraq.