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The Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners Recommend that the
Related Companies, L.P. Develop the 400-room Palm Beach County
Convention Center Hotel in West Palm Beach, Fla. Using
the Hilton Hotels Brand


WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (March 10, 2010) --- The Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners approved the unanimous recommendation by a County Selection Committee that Related Companies, L.P. develop the 400-room Palm Beach County Convention Center Hotel in West Palm Beach, Fla. using the Hilton Hotels brand. The New York-based real estate development company is known for building the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle in Manhattan and CityPlace, the $600 million retail and entertainment center in Downtown West Palm Beach. 

“Related is thrilled to have been selected as the developer of the convention center hotel in Palm Beach County and to continue to realize the CityPlace master plan,” said Stephen M. Ross, Chairman and CEO of Related Companies. “There is no doubt that the hotel is a lynchpin to the success of the county’s very significant investment in the convention center and will be a powerful tourism attractor and key amenity. The development will create over 600 much-needed jobs and give West Palm Beach an important edge in the very competitive meetings and hospitality sectors.”

Related's development team includes Hilton Worldwide; Coastal Construction and Catafulmo Construction; and Coral Gables-based architects Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe & Associates, Inc. Key factors that led to Related’s unanimous ranking include the significant financial strength of the company; the team’s relevant experience and qualifications; their demonstrated success executing high-profile public/private projects; their local investment in CityPlace and its operations; the collaborative and successful relationship with the City of West Palm Beach; and their development plan that not only complements the site but provides for an expansion in the future. 

“Hilton Worldwide is proud to have a role in this important project for Palm Beach County and to be a part of the exceptional team that is collaborating with Related Companies to develop a first class convention center hotel for the destination,” said Ted Ratcliff, SVP Operations - Eastern North America.

“This project is expected to have a positive economic impact on Palm Beach County’s residents through the direct creation of over 360 full time construction jobs over a two year period, 300 permanent full-time jobs once the facility is operational and the realization of the full potential of the existing Convention Center,” said Shannon LaRocque-Baas, Assistant County Administrator for Palm Beach County. “The unanimous support by the Board of County Commissioners to begin negotiations with the Related Companies ensures that we are on the right track to success.”

Palm Beach County will now begin financing discussion and contract negotiations with The Related Companies, which is expected to take four to six months.

“We are proud to have played a role in West Palm Beach’s resurgence for over a decade and the creation of the convention center hotel is crucial to the sustained economic success of CityPlace, the convention center and the Downtown West Palm Beach,” said Kenneth A. Himmel, president and CEO of Related Urban a subsidiary of Related Companies and managing partner of CityPlace Partners. “These elements will all work in concert to position Palm Beach County for the future and build an even stronger local economy with increased opportunity.”

About Related Companies
Related Companies is the most prominent privately-owned real estate firm in the United States. Formed over 37 years ago, Related is a fully-integrated, highly diversified industry leader with experience in virtually every aspect of development, acquisitions, management, finance, marketing and sales. Headquartered in New York City, Related has offices and major developments in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Francisco and South Florida and boasts a team of approximately 2,000 professionals. The Company’s existing portfolio of real estate assets, valued at over $15 billion, is made up of best-in-class mixed-use, residential, retail, office, trade show and affordable properties in premier high-barrier-to-entry markets.

Related is staunchly committed to sustainable design with over $6 billion in green development underway or completed. The firm developed one of the first green residential buildings in the nation, Tribeca Green in Battery Park City, New York and Chicago's first green residential building, 340 on the Park. Related is currently developing a collection of new LEED-certified residential buildings, The Brompton, The Harrison, and Superior Ink in New York City, The Clarendon in Boston and The Century in Los Angeles, as well as several green mixed-use and retail projects. 

In 2006 Related acquired Equinox(R) Fitness Clubs, further expanding the company's capabilities into the health and fitness arena and enhancing the value of its properties by incorporating an exclusive, branded amenity into the lifestyle offering. For more information about Related Companies please visit www.related.com. 

About Hilton Worldwide 
Hilton Worldwide is the leading global hospitality company, spanning the lodging sector from luxurious full-service hotels and resorts to extended-stay suites and mid-priced hotels.  For more than 90 years, Hilton Worldwide has been offering business and leisure travelers the finest in accommodations, service, amenities and value.  The company is dedicated to continuing its tradition of providing exceptional guest experiences across its global brands.  Its brands are comprised of more than 3,500 hotels in 81 countries and include Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Hilton, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Hilton Grand Vacations.  The company also manages the world-class guest reward program Hilton HHonors®. For more information about the company, please visit www.hiltonworldwide.com. 

About Hilton Hotels 
Hilton Hotels is the stylish, forward-thinking global leader of hospitality that welcomes guests in more countries than any other full-service hotel brand. The Hilton brand currently includes more than 530 hotels and resorts in 76 countries, and plans to serve travelers in 80 countries by the end of 2011. By offering innovative products, services and amenities, Hilton enables travelers to be at their best 24/7, whether traveling for business or leisure. Start your journey at www.hilton.com.

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Contact: 

Jennifer Sullivan
  Carey O’Donnell PR Group
(561) 832-3231
jennifer@codpr.com

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Also See: Related Lodging's Plan for a 350-room Hotel Adjacent to Palm Beach County Convention Center Is Years Away / May 2002
Three of Five Bids Rejected to Build Convention Center Hotel in West Palm Beach, Florida; Financial Information of the Entity Guaranteeing the Project Not Passing Muster / September 2009
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