Latest Awards/Recognition News & Views...
Carvers Café at Mount Rushmore National Memorial Named 3 Star Certified Green Restaurant; Only Restaurant in South Dakota to Achieve Designation
Carvers Café at Mount Rushmore National Memorial has been recognized for its distinctive sustainability initiatives by achieving the 3-Star Certified Green Restaurant designation from the Green Restaurant Association.
The only restaurant to achieve the designation in the state of South Dakota, the 300-seat Carvers Café has implemented several successful sustainability programs. For example, the restaurant grows its own vegetables in a Keystone, S.D. garden maintained by employees and serves them in the employee dining room as well as the restaurant, purchases ingredients from local and sustainable sources, and has dramatically reduced its energy needs by changing to LED lighting, installing low-flow water faucets and implementing recycling and composting programs.
“It is exciting to see our sustainability efforts pay off by earning this recognition,” said Lloyd Shelton, food and beverage manager for Xanterra Parks & Resorts, the Mount Rushmore National Memorial concessioner. “Although we’re thrilled to be the only restaurant in the state to be able to display the 3 Star Green Restaurant Certification, we recognize that sustainability is a road, not a destination. We are continually seeking new and innovative ways to reduce our impact on this beautiful place.”
Awarded by the Green Restaurant Association, restaurants achieving the 3-Star Green Restaurant Certification must earn points in a variety of categories including water efficiency, waste reduction and recycling, sustainable furnishings and building materials, sustainable food, energy, disposables and chemical and pollution reduction.
To receive this certification, dining facilities must score 100 points. The Carvers Café received 216.61 points. Certified restaurants mush show continual improvement and receive additional points each year to maintain their status.
Earlier this year, Carvers Café demonstrated its innovative approach to green operations in a particularly fun way by using an ice cream recipe developed by Thomas Jefferson and developing “TJ’s Ice Cream,” using locally sourced ingredients.
For more information about Mount Rushmore National Memorial, visit www.nps.gov/moru. For more information about Xanterra operations at Mount Rushmore, visit http://www.mtrushmorenationalmemorial.com/shop/.
Known for its “Legendary Hospitality with a Softer Footprint,” Xanterra Parks & Resorts® entities include lodges, restaurants, tours and activities in national and state parks and resorts as well as a cruise line, railway and tour operator.
DuPage Convention & Visitors Bureau Ranked as Top 100 DMOs to follow on Twitter
The 2013 Must Follow Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) on Twitter rankings have been announced, and the DuPage Convention & Visitors Bureau (DuPage CVB) has again made the nationwide list, moving up from #90 in 2012 to #81 out of 100 in 2013.
The list is published by Betsy A. Decillis Consulting, LLC. Ms. Decillis is one of the co-founders of the highly successful #tourismchat, a bimonthly Twitter chat focusing on social media in the tourism industry. The chat currently reaches over 300,000 accounts, with nearly 100 contributors per chat. It is the longest running tourism-related chat on Twitter.
“This is so exciting!” states Kari Roberg, Social Media Manager for the DuPage CVB. “To be mentioned in the company of some of the nation’s top DMOs like @VisitFlorida, @VisitSavannah, and @PureMichigan really shows how much our bureau has grown and developed in the social media arena.”
The DuPage CVB has made a conscious effort over the last couple years to increase its social media presence by creating a variety of photo trivia games, contests, and its very own Tweet Chat program (#dupagechat) which is held the third Tuesday of every month at 2:00PM Central Time.
“It’s very rewarding to be recognized on a list like this. It showcases the energy we pour in to our social media campaigns and the far reach this medium has,” adds Roberg.
You can follow the DuPage CVB on Twitter at @DiscoverDuPage. The CVB is also active on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, and offers weekly blog posts on its web site, DiscoverDuPage.com.
For more information about DuPage County and the DuPage Convention & Visitors Bureau, contact Brent Edwards at (800) 232-0502, extension 214, or email@example.com.
About DuPage Convention & Visitors Bureau
The DuPage Convention & Visitors Bureau was established through the efforts of a coalition of DuPage area hotel executives and business representatives in 1987, and was formally certified in 1989 by the State of Illinois. It remains the official agency for promoting the county’s multibillion dollar tourism industry and market DuPage County as an enticing destination for leisure and business travelers, meeting planners, groups and conventions, in order to enhance the economic development of the area.
Experient Honored With PCMA Spirit Award
Experient, the source for integrated meeting and event solutions, was chosen as the 2013 Spirit Award recipient by the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) on Tuesday.
Each year, PCMA honors outstanding members for their contributions to PCMA and the meetings industry. Experient was recognized for its vast number of corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives; supporting with volunteer leadership, employee participation and sponsorship. Experient has been affiliated with PCMA’s Hospitality Helping Hands Program for more than 20 years, and has supported the Boys and Girls Club, Fight Against Breast Cancer Walk, Cradles to Crayons and Toys for Tots programs for many years. Expanding that same spirit outside formal corporate endeavors, Experient offices around the country also participate in fundraisers for local animal shelters, food banks and literacy programs.
“It is a privilege to have been chosen for this prestigious honor over so many other deserving nominees, said Michael Guerriero, Experient’s Division President, Event Management. “We’re proud of our CSR and environmental programs. They have been and will continue to be core to who we are as a company and a corporate culture.”
PCMA will recognize Experient, as well as other Achievement Award winners, in January 2014 at their 58th annual meeting “Convening Leaders” in Boston.
Experient, a Maritz Travel Company, leads the meetings & events industry as one of the best-known and most respected brands in the world. Its core offerings include event intelligence, attendance building, technological innovation, experiential enhancement, risk management & security, and revenue generation & cost savings for association, tradeshow and government clients. Experient employs professionals dedicated to fulfilling its vision of transforming business and people through the event experience by delivering leading-edge solutions in registration, housing, event planning and management, site sourcing, contract negotiation, mobile apps, lead retrieval, marketing and data management for meetings, conventions and exhibitions around the world. Visit www.experient-inc.com for more information. Media kit and staff portraits may be found at www.experient-inc.com/press.
Indianapolis’ The Alexander recognized by three prestigious travel and hospitality organizations
The Alexander – Indy’s newest, innovative and vibrant hotel – is receiving accolades from renowned travel and hospitality organizations.
The Alexander ranked sixth on TripAdvisor’s® inaugural list of “Hot New Hotels” in the U.S. To qualify, hotels must have opened between June 2012 and July 2013, earned a minimum of four of five bubble ratings and collected at least 30 reviews.
"When you make the list of the top 10 hotels for each continent, you know you've done something right,” Michael Moros, general manager of The Alexander, said. “The world is recognizing The Alexander for what we know it to be, an outstanding, vibrant gem in the heart of the Midwest. We're honored to be recognized as one of the top new hotels across the world."
The Alexander also has been awarded Boutique Design’s Most Experimental Hospitality Project of 2013, and will be featured in the November issue.
Gensler, The Alexander’s architect, has been selected from among 260 entries as a finalist in the Best Hotel Midscale category of the 2013 Gold Key Awards for Excellence in Hospitality Design. Gold Key Awards represent the most innovative hospitality properties constructed or renovated within the past 18 months; they are presented by the International Hotel, Motel + Restaurant Show® and sponsored by Boutique Design magazine and HOTELS magazine. The winners will be announced November 10.
As a centerpiece to Indianapolis’ new downtown CityWay neighborhood, The Alexander is unlike any other hotel in the region. The Alexander offers:
The hotel is named for Alexander Ralston, the city planner who laid out the original plan for Indy’s downtown in the early 19th century after studying under Washington, DC, architect Pierre L’Enfant.
The Alexander – and all of CityWay – was developed by Buckingham Companies. More information about The Alexander, operated by Dolce Hotels and Resorts, is available at www.thealexander.com. To view the multimedia assets associated with TripAdvisor’s release, visit http://www.multivu.com/mnr/63165-tripadvisor-names-hot-new-hotels-across-the-globe.
CityWay is a dynamic, new 10-acre neighborhood in the heart of downtown Indianapolis that encompasses a 209-room luxury hotel, apartments and destination restaurants and will include 40,000 square feet of retail and office space, as well as a state-of-the-art YMCA. Contemporary art is incorporated throughout the public spaces, including more than ten site-specific commissions for The Alexander hotel and graffiti art in the parking garages. With a pedestrian-friendly urban design, the mix of public spaces, offices, residential and retail make CityWay an attractive place to work, play and live, and serve as a catalyst for future development in the surrounding neighborhood. More information is available at www.cityway.com.
Dolce Hotels and Resorts
Dolce Hotels and Resorts, a privately held operator of 27 upscale hotels, resorts and conference hotels in North America and Europe founded in 1981, is majority-owned by Broadreach Capital Partners. The company, headquartered in Rockleigh, New Jersey, employs approximately 4,000 worldwide. Additional information is available at www.dolce.com.
Hotel Blackhawk Repeats AAA Four Diamond Award®
Hotel Blackhawk announced it has repeated as an AAA Four Diamond Award ® lodging award winner for 2014.
The hotel is part of a select group within North America. In 2014, just 4.8% of 30,000 AAA lodgings across the United States, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean achieve this status and Hotel Blackhawk is just one of three in Iowa to hold this designation.
Lodgings at this level are refined and stylish, featuring upscale physical attributes, according to AAA. The designees typically offer an extensive array of amenities combined with a high degree of hospitality, personal attention and guest services. The program has been in existence for 76 years.
“Retaining an AAA Four Diamond Award is a point of pride for our entire company,” said Tim Heim, VP – Marketing, Innkeeper Hospitality Services, corporate parent of Hotel Blackhawk. “Seeing the hip and historic experience we strive to deliver for our guests every day result in continuing with this prestigious designation is a tremendous honor.”
Hotel Blackhawk celebrated its re‐opening December 15th, 2010. The hotel retains its 98‐year‐old historic character while featuring modern conveniences throughout the 130 guestrooms and extended‐stay suites, six meeting rooms and up to 300‐person banquet capacity in the signature Gold Room.
Other features include wireless internet, a fitness center, business center, swimming pool, hot tub, Spa Luce (lu‐CHAY), Milan Flower Shop, the Bix Bistro restaurant, the Beignet (been‐YAY) Done That coffee shop and Blackhawk Bowl & Martini Lounge. The hotel is an AAA Four Diamond Hotel and is part of the Autograph Collection and the Historic Hotels of America network. Find us on FaceBook.