Starwood Expands Presence In Taiwan - Business Travel News

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Starwood Expands Presence In Taiwan

September 04, 2000 - 12:00 AM ET

By MARIA LENHART

Starwood Expands Presence In Taiwan

By Maria Lenhart

With the debut of two Westin properties late last year and a Four Points by Sheraton under construction, Starwood Hotels & Resorts suddenly has a growing portfolio of hotels in Taiwan.

In Taipei, where the lone Starwood property had long been the Lai Lai Sheraton, the 288-room room Westin Taipei opened last October. At the same time, Starwood took over the management of the 208-room Ta Shee Resort north of Taipei, reflagging it the Westin Resort Ta Shee.

For its next venture, Starwood plans to open the Four Points Hotel Chung-Ho in June, a 126-room property located in a technological and manufacturing area about 20 minutes from downtown Taipei. One of several Four Points properties under development in Asia, the hotel will be a midscale property, primarily targeting business travelers.

According to Kevin Lin, managing director of the Union Enterprise Group, a Taiwan-based company that is developing the hotel, there is a ready market for such a property. "Taiwan is attracting a growing number of business travelers who visit not only the capital city of Taipei but also regional cities, such as Chung-Ho, where manufacturing centers and industrial parks are being established and growing," he said. "They need value-priced hotels with international business services."

Guest room amenities at the hotel will include workspaces with large desks, telephones with dataports, coffeemakers, irons and ironing boards and complimentary newspapers. The hotel also will offer an all-day restaurant, deli, ballroom accommodating up to 300 people, several small meeting rooms and a business center. There also will be a health club with sauna, steam rooms and a plunge pool.

Also catering primarily to business travelers is the new Westin Taipei, located in the city's financial district. Along with such standard Westin features as the Guest Office and Heavenly Bed, the hotel features a two-floor fitness center with a full gym, aerobics studio, saunas, steam rooms and a rooftop swimming pool. The hotel also offers 12 food and beverage outlets, including a New York-style deli, Irish pub, cigar lounge and several restaurants featuring the cuisines of Beijing, Canton, Italy, Japan, Shanghai and Taiwan.

Geared for corporate meetings, the Westin Resort Tai Shee, located in a scenic area outside Taipei, features four restaurants, extensive banquet space, a 27-hole championship golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr. and a sports plaza with 10 lighted tennis courts, squash courts, bowling alley and three swimming pools.

Although the hotel primarily attracts regional business, Starwood plans to market the property in North America as a meetings and golf destination, according to Nelli Yong, Starwood's managing director of brand marketing for Asia/Pacific. "It is less than an hour's drive from downtown Taipei and very easy to get to for international groups," she said.
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