Getty Images / Joe Raedle

Starwood Signs Deal For First US-Run Hotels In Cuba In Nearly 60 Years

The historic deal comes as officials are worried about the influx of tourists and the lack of infrastructure to support the growing numbers.

By Bell Johnson | March 20, 2016

Starwood Hotels and Resorts has signed hotel deals in Cuba — the first American-based company to do so in nearly 60 years. 

Three historic hotels are part of the expansion: Hotel Inglaterra, Hotel Quinta Avenida and Hotel Santa Isabel, which will all be undergoing renovations and rebranding later this year. 

Currently, hotels in Cuba are state-run, but with the new merger, Starwood is planning to rebrand the hotels and staff them with locals. 

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The deals come just as Cuba is expecting an influx of tourists from the U.S. Last year, the country received over 3.5 million tourists worldwide.  

Since the diplomatic thaw between Cuba and the U.S., Cuban officials and tourist agencies have been worried about having enough space to house tourists.

Americans still can't get tourist visas, but with more round-trip flights, other companies are looking to invest in the island's industries. 

This video includes clips from Bloombergthe White House and Al Jazeera and images from Hotel InglaterraHotel Quinta AvenidaHotel Santa Isabel and Getty Images. 

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