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Ayres Hotels' Effort to Assist Distressed Afghans
COSTA MESA, Calif., February 16, 2006 - Though hotelier Donald Ayres III has never been to Afghanistan, he hopes that the trailer load of blankets, sheets and other bedding he personally collected from some of his family's boutique hotels in Southern California will help make life a bit more comfortable for residents of that war torn county.

But Ayres is quick to credit Nazi Etemadi at Zee Medical of Irvine, Calif., a longtime Ayres' hotel client, who asked Ruth Hartman, senior sales manager for the chain's Costa Mesa property, if the company would be interested in donating any used bedding to the Afghanistan Relief Organization (ARO) she supports.

ARO is a registered nonprofit organization managed by volunteers in the United States and employing Afghan teachers and relief staff in Afghanistan. As a non-governmental organization (NGO), ARO is dedicated to helping the Afghan people by providing relief supplies and educational assistance.

Ayres agreed with Hartman that it was an excellent idea and jumped into action, renting a trailer and personally collecting the bedding for shipment to Afghanistan. Later he joined other volunteers at the relief organization's Orange County facility to load the bedding and other donations into larger containers that are being readied for an airlift to Afghanistan.

"We are grateful to Donald Ayres III and Ayres Hotels for their ongoing generosity and caring by providing much-needed supplies that will be used in family homes, orphan centers and clinics," said Mary Urashima, an ARO volunteer.

"We are pleased to see that Ayres Hotels and Donald III, himself, live up to the hotel chain's slogan, 'We Care About People,"' she said.

"We are delighted to help support this worthy organization that does so much for the people of Afghanistan," said Ayres. "We are honored to be able to donate our surplus supplies to this and similar organizations."

Ayres Hotels are known for their convenient locations near major airports, regional shopping centers, world-famous theme parks, including the Disneyland Resort in Orange County, and other popular attractions.

For more than two decades, the Ayres have been building a reputation for impeccable guest service, and providing creature comforts like living room-style lobbies, with rich upholstered furnishings, inspiring artworks, and imported antiques, and well-appointed guestrooms featuring special touches like exclusive Ayres Dream Sleeper pillow-top mattresses.

About Afghanistan Relief Organization

The Orange County-based Afghanistan Relief Organization (ARO), www.afghanrelief.com, is 501c3 non-profit, with volunteers of all backgrounds and faiths throughout California, across the US and in Afghanistan. It is strictly a humanitarian organization, with no religious or political involvements. ARO recently received support from the British Embassy in Kabul, the European Union, and has previously worked with the US military on airlifting relief supplies. ARO currently is working on its next airlift of relief and educational supplies, and continues to serve the 800-plus girls and boys being taught English, math, computer skills, and vocational skills at ARO's education center in Kabul. A large percentage of these children are "street children" sent to ARO by Save the Children. The programs and relief trips by American volunteers have been reported on by Orange Coast Magazine, the Orange County Register, CNN, and The LA Weekly, among other publications.

About Ayres Hotels

In the hospitality business since 1985, Ayres Hotels owns and operates a unique collection of custom European-style boutique hotels in prime Southern California locations. The core values of the company include caring for people, valuing teamwork and delivering results. The Ayres family has been a leader in the California residential and commercial real estate industry for a century. Visit the company online at www.ayreshotels.com or call 714-540-6060, ext.138.