December 05, 2007

The Arabella Sheraton Grand Hotel in Cape Town, South Africa, has been rebranded as the Westin Grand Cape Town Arabella Quays, the first Westin in that country. The hotel, which is connected to the Cape Town International Convention Centre, has a ballroom and 10 meeting rooms; the property's 483 guest rooms and suites have been refurbished.

The Westin Virginia Beach Town Center opened this week across from the city's Sandler Performing Arts Center. The 38-story property features 236 rooms and 120 Westin-branded residences. Among the hotel's offerings are 10,000 square feet of meeting space featuring wireless Internet, an Executive Club floor and a restaurant.

Rosewood Hotels & Resorts will manage a luxury resort currently under construction in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, a colonial town northwest of Mexico City. Scheduled to open in late 2009, the 63-room Rosewood San Miguel de Allende will include 46 suites and two 1,700-square-foot presidential suites. All rooms will offer fireplaces and outdoor terraces. Also planned onsite: a Rosewood spa, casual and fine-dining restaurants, a rooftop lounge and tapas bar, and a wine and tequila cellar that will be available for private events.

The 575-room JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Tucson, Ariz., is adding a lazy river, other water amenities and a "riverside" restaurant, to open in the spring. Two island patios are being built in the middle of the river and will accommodate receptions for almost 500 people. The current pool area and the lazy river will take up just over an acre of land.

Marriott International will open its first resort in the Maldives, in the Indian Ocean, in 2009. The Renaissance Maldives Gaakoshibee Resort & Spa will have 100 villas, including some over-water bungalows, an over-water spa with eight treatment rooms, several pools, five food-and-beverage outlets and recreational facilities. The resort will be built in the Shaviyani Atoll, which is a 55-minute flight from Male, the capital city of the Maldives.

The 1,334-room Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando has been designated a Florida Green Lodging property. Hotels accepted into the program must meet certain "green" criteria, including using Energy Star appliances, installing programmable thermostats, and running water conservation and recycling programs. The hotel offers 106,000 square feet of meeting space.