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Element is Expanding Its Eco-Conscious Brand in a Big Way

July 22, 2013 at 1:46 PM | by | Comment (1)

Ever since Element Hotels came on the scene in 2008, we've been wondering, "When will they open more?" From the spacious guestrooms (most with kitchenettes) to the eco-friendly amenities (toiletry dispensers in the shower, recycling bins in the kitchen), free WiFi, fitness centers with iPhone charging bikes and the yummy free breakfasts, there's not much we don't like about Element. Heck, even the POTUS has stayed at an Element Hotel before.

Yet aside from the Element in Times Square, there aren't many Elements in the heart of big cities. While that won't change anytime soon, there are several new Element Hotels lined up for 2014 and beyond. Here's where you can expect to find Element Hotels opening in the next few years:

· Element Frankfurt Airport (Germany) – June 2014
· Element Harrison (N.J.) – May 2014
· Element Hanover-Lebanon (N.H.) – September 2014
· Element Vancouver Metrotown (B.C., Canada) - June 2014
· Element Miami Doral (Fla.) – December 2014
· Element Orlando North - July 2015
· Element Flushing (N.Y.) – September 2015
· Element Suzhou Science and Technology Town (China) – July 2015
· Element Calgary Airport South (Alberta, Canada) - July 2016
· Element Muscat, Oman - January 2016

That's right, thanks to Element Hotels in Germany, Canada, Oman and China, Element is going international in a big way.

Paige Francis, vice president of Specialty Select Brands for Starwood Hotels, told HotelChatter, "The Element brand has always been thought of as an international brand." The key, however, was doing it "thoughtfully" especially given that all Element Hotels strive for LEED certification.

It appears the "slowly but surely" approach is working. Francis said the reaction to the Element brand from guests has been "outstanding" with overwhelmingly positive guest experience ratings. In turn, developers internationally are recognizing the benefits of the Element investment model. Francis said there is a one to two percent premium on the initial cost of constructing an Element hotel but that the hotel ends up making that back within three to four years of the hotel's opening, thanks in part to the huge water and energy savings.

So what can we expect from an Element in China? Will it look much like the Element, say, outside of Las Vegas? Yeah, it probably will.

Francis said the Element hotel planned for Suzhou, the Science and Technology Town, will be a bit larger than most Elements with 190 rooms with more meeting spaces but it will still meet LEED certification, something that's especially important since the Element will open in an "eco-city" adjacent to Suzhou's high-tech district. Other than that, Francis said all the other elements of Element hotels will be there from the Westin Heavenly bed, modular furnitures, spa bathrooms, flat-screenTVs, free WiFi, 24-hour fitness centers, and that yummy free breakfast along with an evening reception and a grab-and-go panty for quick and healthy meals.

We'll have to wait until 2015 to see that Element Hotel open but if you need a new Element fix now, an Element did just open in Ontario, Canada, the Element Vaughn Southwest. Or you can visit one of these Elements that are already open.

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