May 28, 2008

Last Thursday, following a multimillion-dollar renovation, the 148-room Courtyard by Marriott Gulfport opened on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The hotel had been the independent Gulfport Beachfront Hotel and was scheduled to begin renovations on the day Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005. All guest rooms at the property have been redone, and each now has a flat-screen TV, an iPod-compatible clock radio and free wireless Internet access. The property offers an Olympic-size outdoor pool and 6,000 square feet of event space, including the 4,048-square-foot Coastal Ballroom.

The construction of a ballroom expansion is under way at the 500-room Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa in Phoenix. When completed in June 2009, the property will have an additional 35,330 square feet of function space in the form of a 15,000-square-foot ballroom, two smaller meeting rooms and an 8,884-square-foot foyer suitable for use as prefunction space. The property currently offers about 50,000 square feet of meeting space, plus two golf courses, the Koli Equestrian Center and the 17,500-square-foot Aji Spa.

InterContinental Hotels Group is developing two hotels in one building in Irving, Texas. Both the 150-room Crowne Plaza and the 85-room Hotel Indigo will open in 2010. The Crowne Plaza's 8,000-square-feet of meeting space will feature natural light; multizone, controllable lighting; ergonomic chairs, and wireless Internet access.

RockResorts will no longer be operating the Chateau at Heavenly Village project, a 477-room condo hotel being built in South Lake Tahoe, Calif. The company cited the recent financing issues experienced by third-party developer Lake Tahoe Development Co. as the reason for its decision. The project broke ground last June and originally was expected to finish in late 2009, but according to the Tahoe Daily Tribune, construction stalled over the winter when financing fell through.

The 156-room Chaminade Resort & Spa in Santa Cruz, Calif., has completed a $15 million renovation of its public spaces, restaurant, lounge, guest rooms, and 12,000 square feet of meeting and event space.

The 208-room InterContinental The Clement Monterey has opened in Monterey, Calif., in the bayfront community of Cannery Row. The property offers 15,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space, the C Restaurant + Bar, a full-service spa and a VIP Kids Club.

Ground was broken on the 215-room Aloft Aventura (Fla.) last week. The property, between Fort Lauderdale and Miami, will open in 2009 with 5,000 square feet of meeting space, a fitness center and a pool.