Starwood is launching a new extended-stay apartment brand under the working title Project ESW.
The luxury hotel group is modelling the concept on its business-friendly Westin hotel brand and believes there is scope for 150 apartment blocks internationally.
Project ESW will feature Westin elements, including the Heavenly Bed and Westin Workout. It will cater for business travellers staying about a month. Each studio or one-bedroom suite will be equipped with a kitchen, larder and office.
The new brand is a partnership between Starwood and residential architect Costas Kondylis, who designed the Trump Tower in New York City.
Project ESW will launch in Lexington, Massachusetts, in late 2007, with a second site scheduled shortly afterwards in San Francisco. Starwood has also received nine franchise bids for the new brand.
\* Aloft Hotels, Starwood's "select service" offering, announced a year ago, now has 100 deals in the pipeline as it moves towards launch next year.