November 01, 2002
Meetings & Conventions: Newsline newsline.gif (8042 bytes)CITY BEATNorthern Calif.
The corks are popping in celebration of Wine Country hotel news. Fairmont Hotels and Resorts put its moniker on the Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa, after a renovation of the 228-room luxury resort wrapped up last month. The property has 7,000 square feet of meeting space and a 40,000-square-foot spa. In nearby Napa, an 80-room Hilton Garden Inn debuted in September with 1,200 square feet of meeting space and, naturally, a wine bar.

The city is debating the issuance of $41 million in bonds for a new hotel. The deal would allow developer John Q. Hammons to build a 261-room Embassy Suites and conference center. Meanwhile, area hoteliers are mulling a 1 percent lodging tax hike to pay for convention center improvements and marketing initiatives by the Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau. If they OK the idea, the new tax of 6 percent would go to legislators next year.

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