By Jorge Sidron
MEXICO CITY -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts said it assumed
management of six small luxury inns in Mexico under an agreement
with Mexico City-based Grupo Plan Planificacion S.A. de C.V., the
real estate development firm that owns the properties.
The six inns, which include four former private haciendas dating
from the 17th century and two beach resorts, are being marketed
under Starwood's Luxury Collection division.
The six inns are: the Careyes Beach Resort in Costa Careyes, the
Tamarindo Golf Resort in Manzanillo, and the Hacienda Temozon,
Hacienda San Jose, Hacienda Santa Rosa and Hacienda Uayamon, all in
This is not the first time Starwood and Grupo Plan have joined
forces. Last year, the two firms announced an agreement to develop
the first W hotel in Latin America, the 239-room W Mexico City,
which is scheduled to open in the capital city's swanky Polanco
neighborhood in 2002.
"We are very excited about the addition of these unique hotels
to Starwood's portfolio," said Osvaldo Librizzi, president of
Starwood's Latin America division.
The addition of the inns to Starwood's Mexico portfolio, which
includes 11 Sheraton and Westin hotels, "allows us to offer our
guests the broadest range of lodging options in Mexico," said
Luis Bosoms, executive director for Grupo Plan, said the firm
tapped Starwood for its brand clout and marketing knowhow.
"One of our goals at Grupo Plan is to create options to bring
back to Mexico the sophisticated traveler looking for a unique
vacation experience," Bosoms said.
Denis Ebrill, senior vice president of Starwood's Latin America
division, said the six properties will undergo an estimated $2.5
million capital improvements program to bring them up to par with
the rest of the Luxury Collection brand.
"The Careyes is probably going to demand more than the others in
terms of capital expenditures, so we will wait to flag that one
until the investment is complete," Ebrill said, although he noted
the Careyes is bookable via the Luxury Collection reservations
In Latin America, Starwood also manages the Park Tower in Buenos
Aires, Argentina, and the San Cristobal Tower in Santiago, Chile,
under the Luxury Collection banner.
The following is a brief description of the six inns.
The 12-room Hacienda Uayamon is the "newest" of the luxury
inns, having been converted from a private home within the past six
months, according to Starwood.
The hacienda is located in the Yucatan state of Campeche, about
two-and-a-half hours by taxi from the Merida Airport. The inn
includes a large swimming pool surrounded by the ruins on the
estate. Rates start at $200 per night, single or double.The Hacienda Temozon, about 35 minutes by taxi south of Merida
airport, was one of the Yucatan's most important haciendas.
Instead of room numbers, each of its 26 rooms bears the name of
the various businesses that occupied the hacienda throughout its
history, including the carpentry room, the school room, the
pharmacy and the cuarto del patron (the hacienda owner's
Rates start at $319 per night, single or double, and many rooms
have their own plunge pools.The 11-room Hacienda San Jose is located 45 minutes by taxi
east of the Merida Airport near the Chichen Itza archaeological
The hacienda's rooms feature high ceilings and brightly colored
tiled floors and walls. Many of the rooms feature private plunge
A master suite comes with its own living room and a large
terrace overlooking a private garden and pool. Rates start at $315
per night, single or double.The Hacienda Santa Rosa's 10 rooms have terraces and private
gardens. Interiors feature bronze bed headboards, hand-embroidered
bed linens, hammocks and many original furnishings from the 17th
Santa Rosa's grounds feature fruit trees and landscaped gardens
in which peacocks roam. Rates start at $315 per night, single or
double.The Careyes Beach Resort is located 60 miles north of the
Manzanillo Airport on Costa Careyes. A Mediterranean-style resort
with Mexican touches, the Careyes features a horseshoe-shaped,
two-story building overlooking a private beach.
Each of the resort's 51 rooms features ocean views, and many
come with private balconies and plunge pools. The interior reflects
a Mexican/Mediterranean folk style with local Parota wood, colorful
ceramics and bright handpainted furnishings. Rates begin at $240
per night, single or double.The 29-room Tamarindo Golf Resort is situated 40 minutes by
taxi north of Manzanillo Airport. The beachside resort is set
within 2,000 acres of rain forest and boasts an 18-hole golf course
with ocean views.
Built in 1994, the resort features palapa-style freestanding
bungalows with floors and furnishings made from local hardwoods.
Rates start at $375 per night, single or double.
For details, call (800) 325-3589 or visit the Web site at www.luxurycollection.com.