Construction has begun on an expansion
to the 745-room Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa in
Anaheim, Calif. Upon completion in late 2009, the property will
feature 200 additional guest rooms for a total of 945, 50 Disney
Vacation Club villas and a new swimming pool.
The 337-room Coeur d'Alene (Idaho) Golf
& Spa Resort and the 398-room Half Moon in Montego Bay,
Jamaica, are the newest members of Associated Luxury Hotels
International. The Coeur d'Alene offers 24,000 square feet of
meeting space, a newly renovated 30,000-square-foot spa and a
top-rated resort golf course. Half moon has 26,000 square feet of
meeting space, a two-mile private beach, 51 swimming pools, an
equestrian center and a golf course.
A new Embassy Suites is planned near
Discovery Green, a new downtown park in Houston. Construction is
scheduled to begin on the 250-room hotel next summer, aiming for an
opening in the beginning of 2010. The property will have 6,000
square feet of meeting space. The deal still is subject to final
franchise approval from Hilton Hotels Corp.
Now open is the 119-room Embassy Suites
Tucson-Paloma Village in Arizona. Part of a mixed-use development
that features a steak house, retailers, art galleries and more, the
property is close to the University of Arizona, Sabino Canyon and
Catalina State Park. The hotel offers 5,400 square feet of meeting
InterContinental Hotels Group will
begin building a 100-room Hotel Indigo in downtown Asheville, N.C.,
in the first quarter of 2008. The 100-room property will feature
elements such as murals, artwork, duvet covers, rugs and more that
will be changed seasonally. The hotel, scheduled to open in the
summer of 2009, will have 465 square feet of meeting space.
In Morrisville, N.C., adjacent to
Raleigh-Durham International Airport, ground was broken last week
on a 103-room, all-suite Cambria Suites. The property, which opens
in May 2008, will offer more than 1,000 square feet for
Wichita LodgeWorks is launching a new
boutique brand, Avia, and upgrading its Sierra Suites chain. The
company, which owns eight Sierra Suites, plans to take the brand
upscale, rename it Hotel Sierra and add another eight properties by
2009. New touches will include upscale food and beverage options, a
coffee bar, high-tech amenities and a complimentary social hour
every evening. The Avia brand will feature upscale hotels with
around 150 rooms each, located in niche markets such as Napa and
Long Beach, Calif.; Houston; and Savannah, Ga. Ground will be
broken on the first Avia this month in Savannah; the hotel is
scheduled to open in December 2008.
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group will manage a new hotel in Milan,
Italy. The 104-room Mandarin Oriental Milan will be housed in three
renovated 19th-century buildings and will feature a 100-seat
ballroom, two meeting rooms, a full-service spa and fitness center.
The property is scheduled to open in 2010.
Fairmont Hotels & Resorts will open the 235-room Fairmont
Beijing next summer. The property will feature a Willow Stream Spa,
restaurants and bars, and an undisclosed amount of meeting space.
Fairmont recently announced plans for additional hotel projects in
Shanghai and Macau.
The 293-room Brown Hotel in Lexington,
Ky., will add 5,000 square feet of meeting space, to be completed
in December, bringing the total meeting space to 21,000 square
feet. The addition will be on the first floor of the hotel and will
include a 2,600-square-foot conference room.
The Bentley Beach Hotel in Miami, will be converted to the Hilton
Bentley South Beach Hotel. The 107-room property offers 5,000
square feet of meeting space.
The 1,000-room Royal Pacific Resort at
Universal Orlando has launched an $8.5 million room renovation. The
rooms will get new bedding, carpeting, wall coverings and
flat-screen televisions. Wireless Internet access will be added by
the end of the year.
Grupo Posadas has opened the 208-room Fiesta Americana Grand
Guadalajara (Mexico) Country Club. The new property is in Colonia
Providencia, a modern corporate and residential district in the
northwest of the city. The hotel accommodates meetings for up to
420 people and offers a contemporary Mexican restaurant and a