Element Hotels launched a new Facebook-based sweepstakes, "I Pledge to Pedal," on Monday. Now through September 17, you can register on Element's Facebook page to win a customizable Strada bike. Ten bikes will be given away, one per week, to U.S. residents, 18 or older.
Element Hotels' Facebook followers can enter the giveaway at Facebook.com/ElementHotels by clicking on the "I Pledge to Pedal" tab (activated July 9) and filling out a registration form. Guests staying at an Element hotel during the sweepstakes can also enter via iPads stationed in the lobby. Winners will be announced every Wednesday.
Based in New York City's Chinatown, Strada is establishing a reputation for sleek, personalized, chromoly steel bikes, allowing customers to choose the colors for everything from the frame to the seat, even the bike chain. The giveaway bikes retail for $400.
For inspiration, each of the 10 Element hotels across the U.S. has designed its own unique bike and will have it on display in the lobby throughout the contest.
"Pledge to Pedal" is the latest effort by Starwood Hotels and Resorts to establish its newest brand, Element Hotels, launched in 2008, as the ultimate in eco-chic. Element hotels are LEED-certified with energy-efficient lighting and plumbing, saline swimming pools, electric vehicle charging stations, and (via their bike-to-borrow program) a fleet of two-wheeled loaners for guests to ride.
Their most recent bike-related gimmick, stationary bikes with pedal-powered generators were introduced at the March 15 opening of Element Miami International Airport, enabling guests to generate electricity and charge their personal electronic devices as they pedal. These buzz-producing cycles will soon be standard in all Element fitness centers.
Starwood President and CEO Frits van Paasschen, an avid biker himself, is determined to make Element the pacesetter in bike-friendly hotels.
"Beyond the fun of the Facebook sweepstakes and the flash of the STRADA bikes, 'I Pledge to Pedal' is about changing a mindset. Choosing two wheels over four is a good move for our own wellbeing and for the planet," says Brian McGuinness, Senior VP of Specialty Brands for Starwood, adding that Element serves as Starwood's "green innovation lab."
Fodors.com contributor Cathleen McCarthy is the rewards expert for CreditCards.com and covers entertainment and travel deals on her own network, Save on Cities. Her travel stories have appeared in The Washington Post, WSJ, Amtrak ARRIVE, Town & Country, and inflight magazines.
Photo Credits: Neon Bikes and Girl with Bike: Courtesy of Strada