August 03, 2005

Owners of the 512-room Hyatt San Jose (Calif.) are considering converting part of the hotel into condominiums. Initial discussions project the addition of a 305-foot condo tower, which would become the tallest building in San Jose, and the conversion of some of the hotel's guest rooms into residences.

The 838-room Sheraton Seattle Hotel & Towers announced the beginning of a $112 million expansion this week. Ground is scheduled to be broken this month on a 415-room, 25-story tower, and 31,000 square feet of meeting space also will be added. When finished, the property, adjacent to the Washington State Convention & Trade Center, will have 1,253 rooms and 75,000 square feet of meeting space. Renovations are expected to wrap by spring 2007.

The Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center has replaced 10 of its 21 luxury buses, which provide guests transportation to Nashville attractions and can be used for charter by convention groups. The resort plans to add three buses a year for the next three years, replacing its entire fleet by 2009.

The 505-room Maritim Hotel Berlin opens this week in the Tiergarten quarter of the German capital. The property has 18 meeting rooms and 45,000 square feet of exhibit space.  

Officials at the 2,300-room Wynn Las Vegas, which opened in April, announced plans to add a 1,600-seat theater to house Monty Python's Broadway musical "Spamalot." The Spamalot Experience & Grail Theatre will open in 2007 and stage the production for at least seven years.

On Aug. 1, Mexican hotel company Palace Resorts opened Le Blanc Spa Resort in Cancun, the first in a line of adults-only hotels. The 260-room hotel has an Italian restaurant, a spa, a private lagoon, four meeting rooms and a 6,000-square-foot ballroom.

A 104-room Hilton Garden Inn opened in downtown Ithaca, N.Y., last week, in a Cornell University building. The hotel has 1,300 square feet of meeting space.

Construction has begun on Santosha Retreat and Spa, an 18-room resort on the east coast of Barbados, an area previously untouched by hotel developers. Some of the rooms will feature private courtyards and plunge pools, the spa will have eight treatment rooms, and the restaurant will feature an open kitchen. An opening date has yet to be set.