Latest Hotels/Resorts News...
Downtown Akron's First New Hotel Since 1980's, the Northside Courtyard by Marriott, Soon to Open
October 7, 2015
By Katie Byard, The Akron Beacon Journal
Next month, downtown Akron's first new hotel in decades will open.
The opening -- set for Nov. 17 -- comes more than five years after local developer Joel Testa initially revealed his ambitious plans for the 10-story Northside Courtyard by Marriott in downtown's northern edge.
From the beginning, Testa has said the hotel will give a big boost to the redevelopment downtown, particularly the Northside District entertainment and residential area, which includes Testa's Northside Lofts condominiums.
"This hotel is unlike any you will see anywhere in the world," he said recently as he stood outside the building above the Little Cuyahoga River.
"It's the only Courtyard model that looks like ours is going to look, has the spaces that ours is going to have," he explained. "You'll never recognize us," in the standard, four-story suburban Courtyard, often built near a highway.
Already, the $25 million hotel on Furnace Street, across from Akron's iconic Luigi's Italian eatery, has attracted key corporate clients, including the Akron RubberDucks minor league baseball team. The team plans to book a minimum of 1,600 room nights a year for visiting teams.
The hotel has 147 guest rooms, including six apartment, or loft-style rooms, that feature exposed brick walls, a living area and 1 1/2 bathrooms.
The ground floor of the hotel includes a small private movie theater, a conference room and two banquet rooms, each with a wall of windows. Below ground is a swimming pool and a fitness room with weight machines. A Starbucks and a convenience mart also will be part of the ground-floor mix.
Read more at hotelonline.com
City Welcomes Boutique Hotel
October 5, 2015
There’s a new reason to visit Springfield, Missouri. The third-largest city in Missouri is welcoming its first boutique lodging option with the recent opening of Hotel Vandivort.
Located in the heart of Springfield at 305 E. Walnut, the sophisticated and design-inspired Hotel Vandivort is a key part of the city’s ongoing downtown renaissance. Through a complete restoration of the 1906 Masonic Temple, Hotel Vandivort and its signature restaurant, The Order, have been created as a cultural hub and gathering place for area residents as well as an upscale lodging option for visitors.
Room reservations are available at www.HotelVandivort.com or by calling 417-832-1515. Special events and meetings also can be booked at the new hotel for upcoming dates.
The property offers 50 stylish guest rooms, 12 suites and two premiere suites. For events, the hotel includes two high-tech meeting rooms and the spacious Vandivort Ballroom with capacity for up to 200 guests. The ballroom on the building’s top floor was a well-known Springfield special event site during the building’s past as the city’s Masonic Temple. Its new incarnation will blend historic elegance with the kind of modern technologies today’s guests need in a site for weddings, banquets and special events.
The hotel décor is a contemporary take on a vintage, industrial space with comfortable gathering places in the on-site restaurant and the open-concept lobby, referred to as Downtown’s Living Room. The hotel capitalizes on Springfield’s vibrant downtown culture to offer an authentic local experience in a convenient central location.
The building is on track to receive a LEED Gold certification in recognition of its environmentally conscious restoration.
The destination restaurant in the lobby of Hotel Vandivort is called The Order as a nod to the building’s Masonic history. The full-service restaurant features locally sourced products and serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and a brunch on the weekends. A creative menu of small plates and hand-crafted cocktails is available at the restaurant’s bar and in soft seating areas throughout the lobby. The hotel’s culinary team will design personalized menus for weddings, banquet events and private dining and will host a regular chef’s table experience.
The new hotel is owned by Springfield residents, brothers Billy and John McQueary, and John’s wife, Karen McQueary. The trio developed the project because of their passion for the city of Springfield.
“We knew we could bring new life back to this significant, historic building and add something to the Springfield landscape that has been missing – a contemporary and style-oriented gathering place for our community,” said Karen McQueary. “It’s been our dream to give something special back to Springfield and we think Hotel Vandivort is the realization of that hope.”
Murder Mystery On the Lake Returns October 23-25, 2015
September 25, 2015
The 10th annual Murder Mystery Weekend presented by The Lodge of Four Seasons at the Lake of the Ozarks is scheduled for October 23 – 25 2015.
The event includes three days and two nights of exciting interactive adventure, two nights of accommodations, a Friday welcome cocktail party when things usually begin with a bang, a Saturday gathering and share clues over breakfast and lunch when things begin to develop, free time until dinner and a Sunday late morning breakfast where the "who done it" is revealed.
Alan R. D’Zurilla, Director of Sales and Marketing at The Lodge said, “The guests who participate in the event always have a great time and many of them return year-after-year. As always, Trust No One is the theme for this fun-filled weekend.”
The weekend event is conducted by executive producers Keith O’Leary and Margo Morrison, creators of Murder Mystery Weekend and Murder Mystery USA (murdermystery.com).
“Cost per person, based on two people per room is $299. Advanced reservations are required. For more details and for reservations call 888.265.5500,” said D’Zurilla.
The Lodge of Four Seasons is nearing the end of a $15 million dollar renovation of the resort. “We are anxious for our returning Murder Mystery Weekend guest and new guests to see and enjoy all our remodeling. We are sure they will be pleased,” concluded D’Zurilla.
For questions or comments please contact Alan R. D’Zurilla, Director of Sales and Marketing at email@example.com.
Golf and craft beer combine forces for inaugural West Michigan Craft Brew Open in October
September 22, 2015
Gull Lake View Golf Club & Resort and West Michigan Beer Tours have partnered to showcase two of the region’s biggest attractions for the inaugural West Michigan Craft Brew Open to be held Oct. 16-18.
The weekend combines golf and craft beer into three days and two nights of no hassle, seasonal relaxation and fun. The Craft Brew Open is highlighted by three days of golf, two nights of lodging, a pair of brewery tours to six different breweries over two evenings, food, prizes and more.
Guests can enjoy the changing colors of autumn, lower their handicap and sample the unique beer styles inspired by the fall.
“We’ve put together an event of two favorite pastimes, golfing and trying new craft beers. This package showcases just a few of the elements that make West Michigan a destination. Everything is taken care of for our guests -- you just show up, relax and enjoy a beautiful fall weekend in Michigan," Gull Lake View owner Jon Scott said.
Tickets for the West Michigan Craft Brew Open are $429. For more information, visit: www.gulllakeview.com/event/west-michigan-craft-brew-open or call 844-207-8493.
The Kitchen and The Kitchen Counter By Wolfgang Puck Now Open at Amway Grand Plaza Hotel
September 21, 2015
Wolfgang Puck, known for his growing empire of casual and fine dining restaurants and catering venues, is enhancing the vibrant food scene of West Michigan with the opening of his latest restaurant concepts, The Kitchen and The Kitchen Counter at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. This opening marks the first U.S. locations of the restaurants which showcase the master chef’s elevated take on made-from-scratch, global comfort fare.
“The Kitchen and The Kitchen Counter are two of my newest concepts and we are very excited for the community of Grand Rapids to experience them first,” said Wolfgang. “The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel is such a beautiful and historical part of downtown and we’re honored to become a part of the family and offer our guests a fresh and innovative dining experience.”
Led by Executive Chef Austin Gresham, The Kitchen’s lunch and dinner menus feature Puck’s signature comfort food with a focus on quality, locally-sourced ingredients and innovative techniques. Menu highlights include tempura shrimp with spicy kimchee and chili aioli; steamed salmon “Hong Kong style” with bok choy, carrots, mushrooms and jasmine rice; and a selection of signature pizzas and house-made pastas. The seasonally-driven menu is designed to accommodate a variety of occasions from swift business lunches with colleagues to leisurely meals with family and friends, or the perfect celebratory date-night destination.
“The Kitchen and The Kitchen Counter by Wolfgang Puck will change the culinary landscape of the city of Grand Rapids,” says George Aquino, VP of AHC+Hospitality. “With a large outdoor seating area along the Grand River, coupled with the inspired menu created by Wolfgang Puck, The Kitchen is an elevated and approachable culinary experience for hotel guests, Grand Rapids locals and visitors alike.”
The Kitchen features a variety of private dining and event spaces which can accommodate up to 70 guests. Visitors can choose from an enclosed wine cellar on the lower level, an expansive outdoor patio and lawn, as well as flexible configurations in the main dining room. The culinary team offers personalized service and attention to detail in order to deliver unforgettable functions for exceptional celebrations, meetings and events.
Situated adjacent to The Kitchen is Puck’s quick-service breakfast and lunch option, The Kitchen Counter. Those looking for fresh, made-to-order options throughout the day can stop in for items such as the mushroom and spinach omelet with goat cheese and whole grain toast or a seasonal salad such as the WP chopped salad with market vegetables, quinoa and champagne vinaigrette.
Ohiya Casino Resort to Open Tatanka Golf Club Sept. 14
September 11, 2015
Glimpses from Nebraska Highway 12 of the eagerly awaited Tatanka Golf Club amid the spectacular rolling hills of the region have drawn passersby seeking information.
“They realize just from looking that it is something unique for miles, not just some little golf development, but a dramatic 18-hole championship golf course,” Brian Burshiem, general manager at Tatanka said.
Tatanka, a Lakota word that translates to buffalo, will open Monday, Sept. 14, creating a new golf destination in northeast Nebraska for visitors to the Ohiya Casino Resort of the Santee Sioux Nation.
“The golf course will put the resort on the map and make its own name,” predicted Burshiem, who is planning special stay-and-play packages and expects the course to create as many as 25 new jobs.
“It is a great add-on for the Santee Sioux Nation. They have a great casino, a great hotel and this is a great golf course.”
Golf course designer Paul Albanese, inspired by his research and the culture of the Santee Sioux Nation, has created what he calls a modern day gem that fits naturally on the land and integrates with the environment.
“Nothing is forced,” he said. “Nature has been respected in the design process, which is something very important to the Sioux and appreciated.”
Albanese said stories were discussed during construction with his team for the creation of every fairway, green and bunker.
“We took the history and the culture of the area and the Santee Sioux Nation and used it as a design inspiration in a subtle and respectful way,” he said. “We looked at the land forms and designed something that might reflect local stories. For instance, how a certain mountain looked and got its name was used. We used a story about a medicine woman as inspiration, too.”
Many of the stories include the great buffalo of the region, and in that regard Albanese took great care to make sure there was literal interpretation. In fenced-in spaces very close to the golf course great buffalo roam.
“Depending on where the buffalo graze on a given day the golfer on a tee can be 10 yards from buffalo,” he said. “We routed the golf course close to them, especially Nos. 11, 12 and 13 and they will be part of the experience of playing Tatanka.”
Burshiem said, “golfers will go away talking about playing the course and seeing the buffalo up close, and the stories shared will beckon more golfers.”
Visit www.tatankagolfclub.com or www.ohiyacasino.com.
Ledgestone Hospitality Opens 89-Suite TownePlace Suites in Lincoln, Nebraska
September 8, 2015
The 89-suite TownePlace Suites by Marriott in Lincoln, Nebraska was scheduled to open Friday, September 4, 2015. Located at 7353 Husker Circle, the TownePlace Suites Lincoln North will operate as a Marriott franchise, managed by Ledgestone Hospitality Companies of Chanhassen, Minnesota.
Located five miles from Lincoln Airport and five minutes from downtown, the hotel offers guests convenient access to the historic Haymarket entertainment district, the University of Nebraska, Memorial Stadium, Pinnacle Bank Arena and the Nebraska State Capitol. Rates vary depending on length of stay.
"We are pleased to introduce the TownePlace Suites brand to the Lincoln 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."
The TownePlace Suites Lincoln North's friendly "hello" signage welcomes guests to the check-in area. Designed to feel like a community coffeehouse, the warm and inviting lobby includes a variety of seating options designed to meet different needs – whether guests want to work quietly on their own or socialize as a group. The lobby also features a floor-to-ceiling TowneMap® that helps guests settle into the local area by featuring great places to eat, popular night spots, recreation areas, shopping and other services, such as dry cleaners and local car wash outlets.
Read the full release here.
The Lodge of Four Seasons readies for the 2015 Missouri Governor’s Conference on Tourism
September 3, 2015
Tom Baker, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Principal of The Lodge of Four Seasons, LLC said, “Renovation of The Lodge is 75 percent complete and will be ready for guests and attendees at the 2015 Missouri Governor’s Conference held at The Lodge this year on October 13-15.”
Baker added, “The huge remodeling project at The Lodge began in March 2015. We are pleased with the results of the project and it is also important to us that we used a large number of local and regional companies in the process. We have been very impressed with the can do attitude and the sincere desire to be a part of restoring one of the finest properties in the Lake Area.”
The list of companies included Mike Riley Construction, Air Masters Corporation, Vaughn Pools and Spa, Ron Shelton Painting, Carpet Lady Company, Dave Hess - Architect with Butler Rosenbury & Partners, Meyer Electric, Inc., Intergration Excellence, Justice Furniture Manufacturing Company, Inc. and J & M Flooring.
Larry McAfee, General Manager of The Lodge commented, “ We have also increased our internal workforce by adding employees to our grounds crew, pool personnel and warehouse staff.”
Renovation of the property includes remodeling of guest rooms, the addition of 55 inch televisions, new draperies, carpeting, fittings, beds and bedding, wall coverings, bath vanities, mirrors and lighting, ergonomic chairs and desk and other decorative accessories plus replacement of all exterior sliding doors.
In addition, all public areas are being renovated including the entry, lobby, restaurants, meeting rooms, atrium, hallways, and exterior building enhancements, including the main swimming pool, roadways and sidewalks plus the replacement of the heating and cooling systems as a part of the multi-million dollar remodeling.
“Our interior decorator, Matchline Design Group of Dallas Texas, told us their plan was to reinvigorate the Lodge with a warm and inviting palette that brings a fresh, yet still comfortable atmosphere. They believe that updated finishes, furnishings and lighting would bring familiarity of the property that guests have come to know and love throughout the years. They have succeeded in doing just that,” concluded Baker.
McAfee added, “Updating and improving our facilities will enhance the experience for our leisure guest. In addition, we are confident our group business guests will find their meetings more productive and worthwhile in our updated meeting rooms, enhance sound systems, new carpeting, conference room chairs, and lighting among other enhancements.”
The Abbey Resort Launches App, Unveils New Website
September 1, 2015
The Abbey Resort and Avani Spa announced the public launch of its app and the unveiling of its new website, both designed to provide guests with a positive customer service experience from their very first encounter with the resort.
“At The Abbey Resort, we strive for excellence in hospitality in all we do,” said Sara Schmitz, Marketing Director for the property. “Because our online presence is often the first impression our guest have of the resort, it’s important to us they experience first-rate customer service when searching for The Abbey online or in an app store.”
The app allows guests to navigate the resort via online map, view activities and events, make reservations, stay current on dining, spa, and overnight specials, and more. The new, mobile-friendly website features improved visuals, simpler site navigation, and a more user-friendly booking process.
The online upgrades follow major renovations to the property in excess of $50 million, which began in 2013 to celebrate the resort’s 50th anniversary of operation. The three-year project included renovations to guest room lounge areas; meeting spaces; the 35,000 square-foot Avani Spa; the resort’s two restaurants, two bars, and coffee shop; the exterior, iconic A-frame; enhancements to the entryway and lobby including the resurfacing of the stone fireplace, and; a new monument sign that welcomes and draws guests in from the moment they arrive.
“Over the past three years we have put a great deal of effort into elevating the guest experience through the completion of major property renovations,” said Schmitz. “Our new website and correlating app support the fact that we are committed to excellence in hospitality across the board at The Abbey Resort.”
The website url remains the same, at www.TheAbbeyResort.com. The app is available in both Droid and iPhone app stores by searching “Abbey Resort,” and can be downloaded from The Abbey Resort’s new website through the following link: http://www.theabbeyresort.com/download-our-app.aspx