Starwood Beats as Travel Trends Pick Up

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. ( TheStreet) -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide ( HOT) beat profit and sales expectations on strong room revenue growth in the second quarter as demand for both business and leisure travel picked up.

Sheraton

Starwoood also forecast third-quarter and full-year earnings in line with analysts" expectations. The hotel operator, which franchises hotels under the Westin, W and Sheraton brands, among others, expects third-quarter earnings to come in between 36 cents and 40 cents a share, with 2011 profit of between $1.67 and $1.77 a share.

Analysts were expecting Starwood to earn 46 cents in the third quarter and $1.71 a share for the year.

In the second quarter, Starwood earned $97 million, or 50 cents a share, up 44.8% from year-earlier earnings of $67 million, or 35 cents a share.

Revenue rose 11% to $1.43 billion.

RevPAR -- or revenue per available room, a key metric in the hotel industry that multiplies a property's room rate by its occupancy rate -- grew 11.8% year over year.

Shares of Starwood were unchanged in premarket trading after closing lower at $55.71 in Wednesday's session.

On Wednesday , Wyndham Worldwide ( WYN) beat profit expectations thanks to strong room revenue and raised its full-year outlook as leisure travel picks up steam.

RevPAR jumped 9.7%. Wyndham franchises lower-priced hotel chains like Days Inn, Ramada and Super 8, which cater more to leisure travelers.

Marriott International ( MAR), which caters more to corporate clients and business travelers, grew revPAR by 6.8% on a worldwide basis in its recent quarter, including 7.3% in international markets and 6.6% in North America. Host Hotels & Resorts ( HST) said revPAR at its hotels increased 6.7% in the quarter.

>>For upcoming earnings and estimates, see our Earnings Calendar.

-- Written by Miriam Marcus Reimer in New York.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Miriam Reimer.

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