Cleveland Airport Marriott Hotel completes first phase of renovation

CLEVELAND, (February 24, 2009) – The Cleveland Airport Marriott Hotel will debut the first phase of an innovative, $20 million renovation program this week.  All 372 guest rooms have been flawlessly redesigned into stylish, comfort spaces with state-of-the-art-amenities, as part of the hotel’s mighty transformation of rooms, meeting spaces, lobby and public areas, and restaurant.

“While we are going through difficult economic times, this huge investment represents our belief in the growth of Cleveland as an evolving market” says Rick Bertram, general manager of the Cleveland Airport Marriott Hotel. “The Marriott will now be a stunning, first-rate property as well as the first in Ohio to offer an important concept for Marriott -- the reinvented lobby, or M.I.Greatroom, designed specifically for the 24/7 work patterns of business travelers today.”

The greatroom concept is offered in impressive Marriott locations such as downtown Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia, even Paris, Munich and Vienna.   Each property has its own individual take on the design. At the Cleveland hotel, the “formal” lobby space will be reconfigured so guests can use the open space to work, relax, plug-in and socialize.  Cleveland’s mbi | k2m Architecture’s interior design division, Spectrum Design Services, is executing  interior design services with completion of all renovations expected by August of this year.

The Marriott’s metamorphosis is emblematic of a growing world-wide industry trend.  From Zurich and Singapore to Chicago, and now Cleveland, airport hotels around the world are having their images shaped and elevated at great expense and with great attention to architecture, style, service and value.  It is an image due for a makeover, as airport properties have traditionally been viewed as functional, humble, and generally last resort places on the travel route.

According to Bertram, the Marriott Airport focus will be on a “destination sensibility” rather than a place to simply sleep. “This renovation will change people’s perceptions, as we believe we can now cater to all of our guests needs.  We’ve thought of everything that’s important to the business and leisure traveler today, as well as those with special meeting and event requirements.”

Another focus throughout the hotel will be redefining the hotel within a distinctive Northeastern, Ohio context. The redesign showcases artwork created by local Cleveland artists.  Photographic images in the rooms and public spaces feature scenes such as Cleveland’s skyline, views of Progressive Field, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Marblehead Lighthouse and Tower City, just to name a few, created by accomplished photographers such as Carl Stimac, Jim Baron and Dan Trypak.

Phase I – Guest Room Highlights

The interior of each guest room has been “zoned” into four distinct areas – the bedroom, work area, a living area and bathroom, allowing guests the opportunity to relax, recharge and plug in, according to Bertram.   The renovation features new finishes, furnishings, lighting and local artwork.  Beds are outfitted with Marriott’s signature plush bedding. The work area features a pivot desk and the living space is accented by a reclining chair. Bathrooms feature granite countertops and ample storage.

Designed for individual technology needs, rooms are equipped with a 37” widescreen, flat-panel, LCD HDTV television along with a “jack pack”, allowing guests to view several types of media files on the LCD television screen. “Gadget heads” and guests alike will appreciate the convenience of plugging in their iPod and becoming their own personal DJ or connecting their digital camera to view their latest snapshots.

Phase II – Meeting Spaces

Beginning at the end of February the hotel’s 16,000 square feet of meeting space and the ballroom hosting up to 500 people will be redesigned with a new look and furnishings. These renovations are set to be completed by the middle of May.

Phase III – Lobby and Restaurant Area

In June, the third phase of renovations will begin with the transformation of the hotel’s lobby. The “M.I. Greatroom” concept features several different “zones” or spaces inspiring guests to eat, work in groups, socialize and relax without the typical architectural barriers.  The multi-dimensional space makes the old pass-through lobby obsolete, and will be a stylish and energetic environment.

A distinctive feature of the room is a large communal table that seats twelve, allowing for group interaction or for individuals to work on their own while remaining in an interactive environment. “It’s ideal for those who don’t want to be limited to staying in their rooms,” says Bertram. “Guests still feel like they’re interacting with others without having to talk.”  Wireless Internet access will also be available throughout the great room.

Too, servers will be able to accommodate the needs of guests throughout the entire lobby space. Equipped with handheld devices, they will take orders for meals and beverages while guests work and engage, as well as double as roving “personal assistants” --lending a hand to guests, such as retrieving their documents from the greatroom’s wireless printer.

Lastly, in the Fall, guests will savor exciting new dining options at the Marriott with an innovative new restaurant and lounge concept, created by a top chef.   Marriott will launch the new menu and look in an open, chic space that seats 125, along with a large private wine and dining room serving 60 guests.

About the Cleveland Airport Marriott Hotel

The Cleveland Airport Marriott Hotel located adjacent to Cleveland Hopkins Airport, was opened in 1968 as one of the first hotels in the country to be flagged under the Marriott brand. The hotel was originally constructed with a low-rise guestroom tower, with a 10-story high guest tower added in 1971. The hotel is in close proximity to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Progressive Field, International Exposition Center and downtown Cleveland. In the past 10 years the hotel has undergone a renovation/addition to the lobby, restaurant and lounge areas. The hotel boasts 16,000 square feet of meeting space, as well as a 120-seat restaurant and a 45-seat lounge. Thomas Point Ventures, L.P. purchased the hotel in 2007 and has embarked upon this extensive renovation.

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