Latest Hotels/Resorts News...
TownePlace Suites Hotel to Open on University of Illinois Campus
June 29, 2015
The 95-suite TownePlace Suites by Marriott in Champaign, Illinois is scheduled to open this Wednesday, July 1, 2015. Located at 524 East Green Street, the TownePlace Suites Champaign will operate as a Marriott franchise, owned and managed by Hospitality Specialists Inc. of Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Located on the University of Illinois campus, the hotel offers guests convenient access to Orpheum Children's Science Museum, Memorial Stadium and Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Rates vary depending on length of stay.
"We are pleased to introduce the TownePlace Suites brand to the Champaign area," said Loren Nalewanski, vice president and global brand manager, TownePlace Suites. "Providing an upscale residential atmosphere, this TownePlace Suites hotel offers an appealing alternative to more standard hotel rooms designed for shorter stays."
Read the full release here.
Hyatt Place Chicago/Downtown-The Loop Celebrates Official Opening
June 25, 2015
Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H) and OTO Development announce the opening of Hyatt Place Chicago/Downtown-The Loop. This is the first Hyatt Place hotel in Chicago’s downtown Loop area, ideally situated just minutes away from shopping and cultural attractions.
“Chicago is a world-class city and travel destination, and Hyatt Place Chicago/Downtown-The Loop is a wonderful new option for all visitors. Located in the heart of the city’s business, financial and theater districts, the hotel offers convenient proximity to destinations like State Street, Millennium Park, the Magnificent Mile, American Girl Place, and many more. It is also less than a block from Hyatt’s corporate headquarters,” said General Manager Jerry Evans.
Hyatt Place Chicago/Downtown-The Loop offers amenities suited to day- or week-long conferences, as well as weekend visits, including:
Hyatt Place Chicago/Downtown-The Loop Leadership
Hyatt Place Chicago/Downtown-The Loop will be under the leadership of General Manager Jerry Evans and Director of Sales Osman Keskin. As General Manager, Evans will be directly responsible for day-to-day operations of the hotel, including overseeing the hotel’s 65 associates and ensuring guests encounter the purposeful service for which the Hyatt Place brand is known. Keskin will provide sales service and support to travelers and meeting planners frequenting the Chicago area.
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Marcus® Hotels & Resorts to Manage New Capitol District Marriott in Omaha, Neb.
June 15, 2015
Marcus® Hotels & Resorts, a division of The Marcus Corporation (NYSE: MCS), and MCS Capital LLC, announced that Marcus Hotels & Resorts has been selected to manage the new Capitol District Marriott hotel currently under development in Omaha, Neb. The 14-story high-rise hotel is being developed by Shamrock Development, Inc. as the anchor for the Capitol District upscale urban destination dining and entertainment district, located in a prime redevelopment area in the city’s downtown. Marcus Hotels & Resorts will be a minority investor in the project and has provided pre-development and design programming for the project, and will provide technical consulting and pre-opening services during the construction phase. MCS Capital is The Marcus Corporation’s hotel investment subsidiary.
Located at Capitol Avenue and 10th Street, the 333-room full-service hotel will also have 20,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, including an 11,000 square-foot ballroom. The new ballroom will be the largest among the downtown Omaha hotels. Other features include a full-service restaurant, two bars, Starbucks® store in the lobby, extra-large fitness center, a rooftop outdoor swimming pool and a parking garage. Construction is underway, with completion anticipated in spring of 2017.
“The Capitol District is going to be an exciting addition to downtown Omaha and we are very pleased to be selected to manage the project’s anchor property. A number of factors came together to make the Capitol District Marriott an excellent opportunity for Marcus Hotels. We are also the majority owner and manager of The Cornhusker, a Marriott Hotel, in Lincoln, giving us a solid presence in Nebraska’s two largest cities,” said Joseph Khairallah, chief operating officer of Marcus Hotels & Resorts. “We look forward to bringing our more than 50 years of hotel expertise to the new Capitol District Marriott and to making it the premier hotel in downtown Omaha.”
View the full release here: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20150615005130/en/
For more information on the Capitol District, please visit: http://www.capitoldistrictomaha.com.
Portfolio Hotels & Resorts Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary
June 12, 2015
Portfolio Hotels & Resorts recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary with a special reception held at the Hilton Chicago/Oak Brook Hills Resort & Conference Center, one of its franchised properties. The event was attended by Portfolio Hotels & Resorts’ executive management, as well as General Managers and Directors of Sales from each their managed hotels. Since the company launched in 2005, the two founders, President Helmut Horn and Chief Operating Officer Graham Hershman – along with a 12-person corporate team, have grown their portfolio to 17, with more on the way. The Westmont, Illinois-based firm specializes in managing boutique hotels, destination resorts, and branded, urban hotels in major markets from coast to coast.
“The key to success for Portfolio Hotels & Resorts has been straightforward, open communication with clients,” said Hershman. “This philosophy is the key ingredient in establishing a defined style and position appropriate for each property’s market potential.”
Portfolio Hotels & Resorts covers a wide range of mid-market to luxury properties (a list can be found at http://www.portfoliohotels.com/our-hotels). The firm works with clients to manage and fine-tune property-wide operations, including: marketing, staff hiring, defining / enforcing standards set out by franchised brands, and recommending and executing renovation plans. “Our goal is to consistently enhance value while refining the guest experience,” added Hershman. “We nurture the entrepreneurial spirit of our managers, yet we also provide the strong support and leadership that are vital to bottom line performance and lasting success.”
Horn and Hershman previously formed Coastal Hotel Group in 1985, where they were responsible for managing luxury destination properties throughout the U.S. and Caribbean. While at Coastal, they also created the Hawthorne Suites brand. Their collective professional experience covers hotel management spanning the globe, including North America, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. In 2004, Horn and Hershman departed Coastal Hotel Group and focused on developing the full-service hospitality company, Portfolio Hotels & Resorts.
As for the future, Portfolio Hotels & Resorts will continue to expand its national portfolio, while also looking into international opportunities. The firm has recently added six hotels and anticipates adding four to five additional properties this year. Hershman says the company is patient in pursuing only those opportunities where they can significantly enhance value.
Midas Hospitality, LLC Opens New Residence Inn by Marriott in Dublin, Ohio
June 11, 2015 | Courtesy HotelOnline.com
An investment group led by Midas Hospitality, LLC announces the opening of a new, 100-room Residence Inn by Marriott - Dublin, OH. Midas Hospitality, a St. Louis-based hotel owner, operator and developer will manage the hotel.
Located at 6364 Frantz Rd, just off I-270, the $13 million development includes 100-suites, indoor pool, sport court, outdoor social area and 500 sq. ft. of meeting space. Kurt Furlong, EVP & Principal - Sales & Marketing, states "The Residence Inn by Marriott - Dublin, OH, will provide a terrific, high-end product to Dublin, OH market serving both the extended stay and transient niche."
Rob Willard, President & Principal of Midas Hospitality, LLC, states, "We have been excited for this day since we bought the land a couple years. This is our first new build Residence Inn by Marriott and could not be happier with the outcome of the development. The product and exceptional service delivery by our staff will position our hotel as the market leader in Dublin."
Read the full release on HotelOnline.com
Shoot. Enter. Win.
Benchmark Hospitality International Launches Summer "Explore" Video Contest
June 9, 2015
Benchmark Hospitality International announces the launch of the “Explore” Video Contest within both of its brand portfolios, Personal Luxury Resorts & Hotels® and Benchmark Resorts & Hotels®. Benchmark encourages all “video vacationistas” to upload their vacation videos onto the Explore Video Contest Facebook pages of each of its brands for a chance to win a two-night stay at another Benchmark hotel for garnering the most ‘Likes.’
“Summer is about fun and having joyful and memorable experiences with friends and family,” said Ted Davis, chief sales & marketing officer for Benchmark Hospitality International. “Our summer video contest provides our guests a wonderful opportunity to capture those experiences and to share them with others. It’s also about our ability to further engage with our guests. To make sure no one gets left out of the video contest, our employees will be happy to take their camera or phone in order to help, if needed.”
Benchmark’s Explore Video Contests run for eight weeks through Sunday, July 26, 2015. Weekly winners will be announced via both brand’s Facebook contest pages every Saturday until then. All contest rules, regulations and disclaimers are found on the contest pages.
Benchmark Resorts & Hotels contest page | Personal Luxury Resorts & Hotels contest page
Minneapolis Marriott Northwest Named Hotel of the Year
June 3, 2015
The Minneapolis Marriott Northwest has been named “Hotel of the Year” for the Americas by Marriott International, continuing its strong run under the Marriott brand. The recent recognition is a crowning achievement in a turnaround that began nearly five years ago.
StepStone Hospitality took over management of the hotel in October 2010 after it went into foreclosure a year earlier. Formerly known as the Northland Inn, the hotel completed an extensive $24 million renovation prior to converting to the Marriott brand in July 2012. At the time, StepStone committed to making the hotel a cornerstone property in the Marriott family.
“This great hotel has become just the kind of successful and locally involved property that we knew it had the potential to be,” said Thomas Russo, chief executive officer, StepStone Hospitality. “The team really deserves this recognition and we appreciate the way our guests have embraced the changes we’ve made.”
“We’re proud of our staff and their extraordinary efforts on behalf of this hotel,” said General Manager Bob Schrader. “They’ve really gone above and beyond to be of service not only to the hotel and our guests, but also to the local community.”
The hotel was also recently recognized for “Property Sales Team of the Year,” gaining recognition for effective sales and marketing combined with a commitment to serving the community. The team is credited with quickly ramping up the hotel’s revenues, both rooms and food & beverage following the renovation, through both regional and local initiatives, while at the same time giving back to the community.
The awards are based on a number of criteria including customer service, community service, and RevPAR (revenue per available room) penetration. In recent years the property also received the Marriott Renovation Excellence Award and the Marriott Service Excellence Award for finishing #1 out of all full-service Marriott hotels in guest satisfaction.
European Design and Style Come to Life at New AC Hotel Chicago Downtown
June 2, 2015
Marcus® Hotels & Resorts, a division of The Marcus Corporation (NYSE: MCS), and Marriott International, Inc. announced the opening of the AC Hotel Chicago Downtown, bringing European timelessness and elegance to Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. The 226-room hotel located at 630 N. Rush Street is the fourth AC Hotels by Marriott branded property to open in the U.S.
Located in Chicago’s River North area, the heart of the city’s shopping, dining and entertainment district, the AC Hotel by Marriott lifestyle brand targets the millennial traveler searching for a design-led hotel in a vibrant location with high-quality service. The brand boasts urban, simplistic and clean designs with European aesthetics and elegance, the latest technology and communal functional spaces. The result is elegant yet unpretentious style, innovative food and beverage programming and locally inspired experiences for both guests and locals.
“We are very excited to bring one of the first AC Hotels by Marriott in the U.S. to Chicago’s popular River North area,” said Gregory S. Marcus, president and CEO of The Marcus Corporation. “The urban-inspired feel and sleek, European designs make this brand the perfect fit for Chicago, providing guests with a cosmopolitan, yet relaxed atmosphere. This sophisticated, lifestyle brand will fit in perfectly with Chicago’s fashion-forward, trendsetting environment, and will provide guests with a unique travel experience right in the heart of downtown.”
“Chicago is such a vibrant city with an active arts scene and energetic urban culture,” said Toni Stoekl, VP Lifestyle Brands, Marriott International. “Located in the heart of the shopping district and within walking distance to the city’s main tourist attractions, AC Hotel Chicago Downtown is situated perfectly for millennial travelers looking to experience everything the city has to offer.”
Other amenities include outdoor terraces with views of the city, on-site parking and 3,000 square-feet of meeting space.
Read the full release here.
Le Méridien Columbus, The Joseph, Features Innovative Artistic Collaboration with Famed Pizzuti Collection
June 1, 2015
Located at the epicenter of creative thinking, Le Méridien Columbus, The Joseph, 620 North High Street, enhances the city’s thriving Short North Arts District by creating an unrivaled opportunity for guests to unlock the destination through artistic discovery. Owned by The Pizzuti Companies and operated by Wischermann Partners, Le Meridien Columbus, The Joseph incorporates its passion for art and culture in every aspect of conception, featuring over 700 pieces of art including striking original artwork from Ron and Ann Pizzuti’s personal collection and The Ohio Portfolio Collection, a series of lithographs created by 15 Ohio artists exclusively for Le Méridien. In a unique twist, pieces from The Ohio Portfolio Collection are available for purchase via www.JosephEditions.com.
The Ohio Portfolio Collection is a testament to the Pizzuti Family’s dedication to Ohio artists through the development of the hotel. Local artists were invited to submit their work for consideration, and the Pizzuti Collection selected 15, who then collaborated on pieces specifically for the hotel.
The local artists include Laura Bidwa, Steven Bindernagel, Mary Jo Bole, April Deacon, Sarah Fairchild, Linda Gall, Denny Griffith, Daina Higgins, Dion Johnson, David Skeens, Kurt Lightner, Kirk Mangus, Tony Mendoza, Dana Oldfather and Laura Sanders.
Upon entering the hotel, creative individuals are immediately enthralled by the exquisite two-story Le Méridien Hub™, spotlighting NYT, the entrance artwork created by internationally acclaimed artist KAWS. With floor-to-ceiling windows allowing for an abundance of natural light, The Hub intrigues both guests and locals with a cultivated, welcoming atmosphere where contemporary artwork sets the environment. The second level of the Hub, “The Gallery”, features some of the world’s most prestigious pieces, including works on paper by Zohar Lazar and Jason Middlebrook, mixed media sculptures by Nari Ward, photographs by Miriam Bohm, works by Evan Gruzis, and a giant sculpture composed out of Legos by Los Carpinteros, among many other pieces which rotate on a regular basis. Each of the 135 guestrooms, including 11 suites, spotlight nearly 600 works of art and the guestroom hallways of the hotel are adorned with wallpaper created by artist Almond Zigmund exclusively for Le Méridien Columbus, The Joseph.
Each meeting room is named after influential resident Ohio artists including Ann Hamilton, a leading contemporary artist known for the sensory surrounds of her large-scale multi-media installations; Dennison W. Griffith, a distinguished painter known for abstract work inspired by the physical world; and Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson, an artist known for her distinctive drawings, woodcuts and complex sculptures inspired by her family’s ancestry and Columbus neighborhoods. Each meeting room features one work of art from that namesake artist.
Le Méridien Columbus, The Joseph Unlocks Art beyond just the walls of the hotel. In a cutting-edge, artistic collaboration with the global Pizzuti Collection, Le Méridien Columbus, The Joseph’s room keycards open the doors to the city’s unique world of art and culture. Each keycard, which is itself a handheld piece of art created exclusively by LM100 artists, grants guests complimentary access to all Pizzuti Collection exhibitions, located just steps away from the hotel.