Monday, March 1, 2010

Starwood Names Ralph Burnet of Minneapolis Developer of the Year for 2009

MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. has named Ralph Burnet, (top right photo)  and his company RWB Development, 2009 Developer of the Year.

The honor was announced at the recent Starwood North America Owners Conference held in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The award was presented in recognition of Burnet’s two Starwood-managed properties, W MinneapolisThe Foshay (bottom right  photo)  and the recently converted, Le Meridien Chambers, (top left  photo)  both located in Minneapolis.

The Starwood Developer of the Year award recognizes those organizations or individuals that opened hotels between Sept. 1, 2008 and Dec. 31, 2009 and went above and beyond to ensure that development was on-time, on-strategy and on-brand.

In presenting the award to Burnet, Denise Coll, ( middle left photo) President of the North America Division, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc, noted his “passion for art, design and lifestyle hotel brands as reflected in his two spectacular properties.”

“Ralph takes personal ownership of his investments, and his attention to detail is evident the moment you walk in the door to one of his hotels,” said Coll.

“Both his hotels are historical retrofits of office buildings and among the first of their kind. Ralph’s belief in Starwood's brands has made him an incredible asset to the company, and his zest for collecting art and globetrotting has helped to authentically bring the W and Le Méridien points of view to life.”

The award was presented as part of the First Annual North America Owner Awards and was one of 19 awards presented in eight different categories.

Other categories included: Environmental Sustainability, Community Outreach, Conversion of the Year, New Build of the Year, Renovation of the Year, Deal of the Year and the President’s Award.

Le Méridien Chambers is a 60-room art hotel located at 901 Hennepin Avenue, and is considered one of the top art hotels in the world. Burnet’s other Starwood hotel is W Minneapolis – The Foshay, located in the historic Foshay Tower.

W Minneapolis is a 229-room, contemporary lifestyle hotel located at Marquette and Ninth Street, featuring its own museum and Minneapolis/St Paul’s only public observation deck. Both hotels are located in downtown Minneapolis in the heart of the city’s cultural, business and social scenes.

For more information or reservations visit or
Contact:  Jacqueline Hanson, 952-941-3949, Hanson Communications, 952-451-5000 M,

Hines Receives Top Award From EPA

Energy Efficiency a High Priority for Hines and Its Tenants

HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Hines, the international real estate firm, announced today that it has been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the 2010 ENERGY STAR® Sustained Excellence Award in recognition of continued leadership in protecting the environment through energy efficiency.

Hines will be recognized at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C., on March 18.

“The ability to continually reduce energy consumption over long periods of time requires creativity and discipline, and Hines has been highly successful in this area – while also broadly promoting the ENERGY STAR partnership to clients, employees and tenants.”

(Del Bosque, Mexico City, Mexico, top left photo)

This is the sixth time Hines has been recognized by the EPA as a Partner of the Year and the third time Hines has received the Sustained Excellence Award.

Hines’ portfolio of ENERGY STAR buildings consists of 147 facilities and more than 75 million square feet. With a weighted-average performance rating of 88 (38 points higher than the national average), the portfolio is 41.5 percent more energy efficient than the national average.

This translates into a savings of $1.35 per-square-foot per year, as well as estimated annual greenhouse gas reductions equivalent to removing 100,000 automobiles from the road.

(Williams Tower, Houston, TX, middle right photo)

Hines is also a leading developer in the EPA’s Designed to Earn the ENERGY STAR program, which recognizes buildings designed to achieve superior results in energy efficiency. Twelve Hines projects have earned this designation.

“Hines has continued to demonstrate exemplary leadership among ENERGY STAR partners for more than a decade,” said Alyssa Quarforth,  (top right photo) U.S. EPA ENERGY STAR Program Manager for Commercial Properties.

(EDF Tower, Paris, France, middle left photo)

“The ability to continually reduce energy consumption over long periods of time requires creativity and discipline, and Hines has been highly successful in this area – while also broadly promoting the ENERGY STAR partnership to clients, employees and tenants.”

In addition to emphasizing the importance of energy efficiency to its tenants, Hines offers its “GREEN OFFICE for Tenants” program to enhance sustainable operations within tenant spaces.

“Energy efficiency is one of the most important value drivers in today’s real estate economy,” said Hines President and CEO Jeffrey C. Hines. “We use ENERGY STAR in tandem with Hines’ proprietary building management tools to maximize performance, minimize risk and preserve long-term value.”

Hines is also a leader in the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® program. Last week, Hines announced that its portfolio of developed, owned and/or managed properties in the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program had exceeded 100 million square feet, representing nearly 200 projects.

Sustained Excellence Awards are given to organizations that have exhibited outstanding leadership year after year, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by setting and achieving aggressive goals, employing innovative approaches, and showing others what can be achieved.

 Award winners are selected from more than 17,000 organizations that participate in the ENERGY STAR program. ENERGY STAR was introduced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1992 as a voluntary market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through increased energy efficiency. For more information visit

Hines is a privately owned real estate firm involved in real estate investment, development and property management worldwide. The firm’s historical and current portfolio of projects that are underway, completed, acquired and managed for third parties includes 1,111 properties representing more than 451 million square feet.

With offices in more than 100 cities in 17 countries, and controlled assets valued at approximately $22.2 billion, Hines is one of the largest real estate organizations in the world. Visit for more information.

Contacts: Hines, George Lancaster, 713-966-7676,