By Eliza Theiss, Associate Editor
Tel Aviv, Israel—Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. is bringing its W hotel brand to Israel. The company announced partnering with Manhattan-based RFR Holding LLC, a privately controlled real estate investment, development and management firm to develop the country’s first W branded hotel.
The luxurious design-led lifestyle hotel, dubbed W Tel Aviv—Jaffa, will be established in a historic 19th century building in Tel Aviv’s ancient Jaffa port neighborhood, currently undergoing a massive revitalization project, including a multi-million dollar infrastructure and sea promenade rehaul. The hotel will be owned by RFR Holding and is expected to open in 2015. The project is designed by acclaimed architect John Pawson alongside Ramy Gill Architects & Urban Designers, who also handled design for the new port of Jaffa.
W Tel Aviv—Jaffa will feature 125 guest rooms in the revitalized heritage building, including suites and an Extreme WOW Suite—the W brand’s presidential suite equivalent. Hotel amenities will include a full-service, 24-hour WIRED business center, signature outdoor WET pool deck, state-of-the-art signature SWEAT fitness center, Away Spa, W Living Room hotel lobby and a yet-to-be-named destination bar and signature restaurant. Panoramic views of the Mediterranean coast will complement W’s mix of cutting-edge design and local influences.
“We are delighted to expand our relationship with RFR Holding, who also owns W South Beach Hotels & Residences, as we open the first W Hotel in Israel,” Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Europe, Africa and Middle East President Roeland Vos says.
W Tel Aviv –Jaffa will also include a residential component as well. Dubbed The Residences at Tel Aviv—Jaffa, the project will comprise of 38 private-access W-branded luxury apartments. The units will range between 753 and 4,305 square feet and will be housed in a new structure that is to be built adjacent to the existing historic building. Future residents will have access to hotel amenities and services.
“The signing of W Tel Aviv—Jaffa and The Residences at W Tel Aviv—Jaffa underlines Starwood’s continued commitment to grow our portfolio of luxury brands globally,” Starwood Hotels & Resorts Europe, Africa & Middle East Acquisitions & Development Senior Vice President Bart Carnahan says. The W brand currently has 44 locations worldwide. Its network of hotels and retreats is poised to reach 60 locations by the end of 2015.
Starwood also recently opened its first W branded property on Mainland China.