Sheraton Hotels and Resorts has opened its second property in Turkey’s largest city, and remains on track with its US$4bn global development plans. The new Sheraton Istanbul Atakoy is located 8 km from Istanbul Ataturk International airport and is within 10 km of the city centre.
The luxury hotel has 285 guest rooms, including 24 suites and 32 club rooms, which all come with the signature Sweet Sleeper bed and a plasma screen television with satellite channels, as well as wifi internet access. The main restaurant, Cookbook, serves international and Turkish cuisine, while Asian Fusion serves modern far eastern food.
The property, which overlooks the Marmara Sea, was previously a Holiday Inn, before the 40,000 sqm interior of the building was entirely gutted and rebuilt. The grounds have also been redeveloped. Meeting facilities include two ball rooms for up to 566 people theatre-style, plus nine meeting rooms, the largest of which can take up to 80 people theatre-style.
The lobby features the new Link@Sheraton space, designed to allow guests to “work, relax, unwind and connect”. Sheraton Istanbul Atakoy also offers a free shuttle bus service, from 6am to 1am, between the hotel and the airport, as well as to central areas of the city, Sultanahmet and Taksim.
Sheraton opened 26 new hotels in 2008, including 16 in North America, and expects to have another 20 in the brand by the end of the year, including the recently opened Sheraton Prague Charles Square Hotel (see online news March 3), plus new properties in Brooklyn, US and Guangzhou, China.
Sheraton has recently confirmed that its US$4 billion development plan is set to continue on track, despite the economic downturn, as preparations and financing for the Sheraton brand’s revitalization were in place long before the current economic crisis.
Hoyt H. Harper II, senior vice president for Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, said: “By adding new flagships, renovating existing hotels, enhancing our signature services and exiting properties that were not up to par, we’ve vastly upgraded the brand and improved consistency.” The programme included US$2 billion to be spent on new hotels and US$1.3 billion on renovations at existing properties.
“We’ve essentially spent the last few years rebuilding the house,” added Harper, “and when the economy begins to recover and business picks up, more travellers will discover a new level of product and services at Sheraton hotels around the world.”
The development plan, started in 2007, is now 70 per cent complete, with 63 of the 98 refurbishments in the US and Canada now finished. Another 30 are scheduled for renovation this year, including Sheraton Denver and Le Centre Sheraton Montreal. Some hotels have not met the brand’s standards, however, and have “exited the brand”.
Report by Sara Turner