Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide chose the anual Lodging Conference here to announce Element, the name of its new extended stay brand.

Starwood first unveiled plans for the upscale extended stay entry in June at the NYU Hospitality Investment Conference. It had been known as Project Extended Stay Westin, a reference to its similarity in positioning to Starwood's successful upper upscale entry Westin.

"Like Westin, Element will offer guests a sense of renewal, a haven from the pressures they face in their working lives," said Starwood CEO Steve Heyer.

The launch of Element follows the introduction at the same conference a year ago of the name Aloft for its new upper end select service brand. In the year since its introduction, Aloft has signed up numerous developers to builod the new construction hotels, mostly in suburban locations.

The first Element is scheduled to be a company-owned unit in Lexington, MA. Starwood said it eventually envisions having 500 Element hotels in North America.