by Morton D. Rosenbaum | May 01, 2004

Springfield, Mo.
A New Hotel Rises
First came the arena, now the hotel. A 120-room Holiday Inn Express, scheduled to open in May 2005, is being built within walking distance of Hammons Field, a new 8,100-seat AA Minor League baseball stadium that opened last month. The new property will feature 1,000 square feet of meeting space and complimentary high-speed Internet access in guest rooms.

Grand Rapids, Mich.
Expansion Continues
On Dec. 3, 2003, the new $211 million DeVos Place convention center opened in downtown Grand Rapids, with more to follow. Phase II, a 40,000-square-foot ballroom, is expected to open by early 2005, bringing the center’s total meeting and exhibit space to 250,000 square feet. A new 300-room hotel, connected to the center by skywalk, will support the expansion. Construction will begin in 2005, with an opening projected for 2007. And opening in 2006 is the new $75 million Grand Rapids Art Museum.

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CA, Los Angeles
The 221-suite Embassy Suites Los Angeles International Airport completed a four-month, $3 million renovation in March. The property has completely revamped its 4,200 square feet of meeting space as well as its bedrooms, with the added bonus of pillowtop mattresses for all.

NC, Duck
This month, the 88-room Sanderling Resort, Spa and Conference Center debuts its 8,000-square-foot Spa on the Outer Banks. The 12-acre property offers 1,550 square feet of meeting space.

NY, New York
The upscale 187-room Hotel Gansevoort opened in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District in March. The property’s 6,502-square-foot rooftop provides myriad meeting-space possibilities, along with a 45-foot heated swimming pool equipped with underwater speakers. The cellar contains a 1,216-square-foot executive meeting room as well as a separate board room and prefunction space; the hotel also offers a 5,100-square-foot, full-service spa.

Marco Island Marriott Resort

Marco Island Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa reached the end of an $80 million renovation in March. Now featuring a 24,000-square-foot Balinese health spa and the 10,000-square-foot Palms Ballroom, the property also has revamped its 20,000-square-foot grand ballroom, boosting meeting space to 60,000 versatile square feet. (800) 228-9290;

OH, Columbus
April marked the conversion of the 415-room Adam’s Mark Hotel to the Renaissance Columbus Hotel. New owners Marriott International plan extensive renovations to the lobby, guest rooms, restaurant and meeting space, with an expected completion date of early 2005. The property’s 33,500 square feet of meeting space include an 11,700-square-foot ballroom.

OK, Oklahoma City
This city’s recently renovated Cox Business Services Convention Center now can offer 225 more area guest rooms, thanks to the new Courtyard by Marriott Oklahoma City Downtown/Bricktown Hotel. The $30 million property with its 600-space parking garage opened in March directly across from the Cox’s more than one million square feet of meeting space.

PA, Pittsburgh
The city’s Downtown Cultural District is home to the new 182-room Courtyard by Marriott. The property, which opened in March, is comprised of two restored early- 20th century buildings. With 1,200 square feet of  meeting space, the hotel stands adjacent to the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

Washington, DC
March saw the grand opening of Mandarin Oriental Washington, D.C. Overlooking the Jefferson Memorial, the 400-room property offers 34,000 square feet of meeting space, including a pillarless 8,300-square-foot ballroom. This month, the hotel adds a 10,400-square-foot spa.