Alec Sanguinetti, director general and
CEO of the Caribbean Hotel Association, said last week that "the
recent downturn in the U.S. economy is not impacting interest in
the Caribbean." He was speaking at the 12th annual Caribbean Hotel
& Tourism Investment Conference, a joint venture of the hotel
association and the Caribbean Tourism Organization, held May 6-8 at
the new 428-room Hyatt Regency Trinidad in Port of Spain. The goals
of the conference were to attract tourism investment to the region
and publicize development opportunities. More than 520 delegates
attended, a 30 percent increase compared with last year's numbers.
Other speakers included Jan Freitag, vice president of global
development for Smith Travel Research, and the Honorable Patrick
Manning, prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago.
Construction has begun on a W hotel in
Austin, Texas. The W Austin Hotel & Residences will open in
early 2011 with 252 guest rooms, 9,300 square feet of meeting
space, an 8,000-square-foot spa, several restaurants and lounges,
and about 165 residences. The property is part of a $295 million
mixed-use development that will include a 2,480-seat theater and
music venue, which will be the new home of PBS's long-running
concert series, Austin City Limits.
The Ritz-Carlton, Denver, opened its
6,800-square-foot spa on Thursday. The facility offers eight
treatment rooms, including a VIP suite, and separate ladies' and
men's whirlpools and relaxation lounges. The downtown property has
202 rooms and 13,000 square feet of meeting space.
A 142-room Hotel Indigo will open in spring 2009 in College Park,
Ga., next to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and
one mile from the Georgia International Convention Center. The
hotel will offer a restaurant, a business center, a pool and 1,500
square feet of meeting space.
Hilton is planning to build two new hotels near the Pittsburgh
Airport, to open in autumn 2010, according to the Pittsburgh
Tribune-Review. A 128-room Hilton Garden Suites and a 101-room
Homewood Suites are both slated for a 22-acre complex called Scott
Hilton Cartagena unveiled a US$5
million, 53-room executive tower. The Colombian property now offers
341 rooms overall. The new tower, which features seven suites and
an executive lounge, is in the property's north wing, adjacent to
the convention center. The hotel opened a new spa at the end of
Nikki Beach Hotels & Resorts
announced plans to build a 140-room and 132-residence Nikki Beach
Hotel in Saraya Aqaba, Jordan, to open in 2009. The resort, along
the Gulf of Aqaba's beachfront, will have restaurants, shops, a
pool, a spa and fitness center, and a business center. The hotel
will have an undetermined amount of meeting space.