Tag: Opens

Mack-Cali announces $12.75 million sale; Hotel opens in Secaucus | Business Notes

Mack-Cali announces $12.75 million sale

Mack-Cali Realty Corporation (NYSE:CLI) announced on Nov. 24 the disposition of 7 Campus Drive, a 154,820-square-foot office building in Parsippany, to Birch Group for approximately $12.75 million. This sale brings the year-to-date suburban office dispositions total to $270.35 million. For more information on Mack-Cali Realty Corporation and its properties, visit www.mack-cali.com.

NJ native opens business featuring bubble baths

Amidst all obstacles, Javier Folgar, a NJ native, opened TOA Waters, offering a unique line of premium bubble baths for the rugged individual. The company will operate virtually, providing nourishing, “brawny scented” bubble baths.

Getting to the point of virtually opening his doors was no easy task. Suppliers were short on stock, banks were hesitant to offer start-ups lines of credit, and there were massive delays in shipping.

Folgar currently serves as the Director of Communications for Bat Conservation International, an organization dedicated to ending bat extinctions worldwide. He received a B.S. in Marketing from Rutgers University and earned an MBA from Montclair State University.

TOA Waters, named after a river in Cuba to honor Folgar’s heritage, began accepting orders this fall in time for the holiday season. The bubble bath products use whole milk, botanical extracts, b-vitamins, and much more. For more information, visit TOAwaters.com or facebook.com/TOAwaters.

Meadowlands opens as Secaucus’s newest hotel

Aloft Hotels, along with Indianapolis-based Sun Development & Management Company, announced on Nov. 24 the opening of Secaucus’s newest hotel, Aloft Secaucus Meadowlands. The newly built hotel from Marriott International’s tech-savvy and design-forward brand features 171 urban-inspired guestrooms. The hotel embodies Aloft’s updated brand design vision, reflecting how tech-savvy, global travelers want hotels to be. General Manager Wellington Gonzalez leads the team at the hotel.

Guests will enjoy amenities such as Splash, the indoor pool; Aloft’s signature W XYZ Bar with an extensive cocktail menu and regular live music programming; Re:fuel by Aloft, serving gourmet-grab-and-go options around the clock; and the state-of-the-art Re:charge fitness center.

Aloft Secaucus Meadowlands features built-in outlets for amps and microphones, offering global music programming which Aloft offers in its live music series, Live at Aloft Hotels.

In honor of the grand opening, travelers can take advantage of a 20 percent off accommodations special offer valid through March 31. Rates start from $149 nightly and can be booked by going to https://bit.ly/373RBEi or by calling 888-236-2427 and referencing Grand Opening Rates.

New Jersey Applebee’s locations to raise funds for Toys for Tots this holiday season

Applebee’s locations in New Jersey announced the 22nd annual campaign to raise funds in support of the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program, which distributes new toys to as many underprivileged children as possible to provide a tangible sign of hope during the Christmas season.

This year, Applebee’s is providing guests with multiple ways to make a child’s Christmas happy. For a limited time only you can buy Toys for Tots by adding tater tots to any order for just a $3 donation. Guests can also round up their checks or donate a

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Rand Hotel Tower opens this week after $110 million renovation

The Rand Tower reopens Wednesday in downtown Minneapolis after a $110 million renovation that converted the art deco office building into a luxury boutique hotel.

The renovation by Minneapolis-based Ryan Cos. and ESG Architects preserves the architectural aviation and art deco themes created in 1929 by the original designer and World War I pilot Rufus R. Rand. But as a new four-and-a-half star hotel, it offers the public something new.

The structure, on the National Register of Historic Places, is the latest to join Tribute By Marriott’s boutique hotel group. It features aviation-themed lights, marble floors and engraved medallions at every turn. It sports two bars and restaurants (one with a retractable roof imported from Turkey), and an expansive $500,000 video wall on the skyway level that will drop jaws.

The custom wallpaper, restored terrazzo lobby floors — embedded with silver metal globes and moons — and a new $10 million staircase that carves through the tower’s 26 stories aim to dazzle. Maven Real Estate Partners, which bought the building in 2017, also installed an extensive exterior lighting system that can flood the tower in a million different color combinations.

The spectacle debuts during a raging pandemic that has stalled much U.S. travel and large swaths of the economy.

Twin Cities hotel occupancy rates fell to 29.7% as of Nov. 14, from 67% a year ago, according to STR, formerly Smith Travel Research. The American Hotel and Lodging Association predicts 67% of Minnesota’s 1,006 hotels could close without congressional aid.

The problematic timing has Rand co-owner Nick Peterson alternately “panicked and terrified” and “hopeful” his investors have the financial heft to weather COVID-19.

The “all gussied up” Rand Hotel project is the city’s latest to sit largely empty as developers await COVID’s retreat. Others include the newly completed Dayton’s Project on Nicollet Avenue and the gleaming Thrivent headquarters on Portland Avenue.

As hotel watchers root for the Rand, they insist there’s no crystal ball.

“Having a beautiful facility and being new gives these guys a leg up versus some other products in the market,” said Howard Anderson, board member of trade group Hospitality Minnesota and vice president of ZMC Hotels. “But their ultimate success in the [hotel] market all depends on how quickly the demand generators come back.”

Those generators include conventions, company travel, concerts and Twins and Vikings games, among others. STR predicts hotel reservations won’t bounce back until late 2022.

But that hasn’t stopped Peterson, who opens the Rand this week, much earlier than the original April 2021 timeline. The energetic developer, who grew up in the west metro and normally restores beat-up apartment buildings in Minneapolis and Chicago, was excited to show visitors his first hotel earlier this month.

“Isn’t this awesome. Look at this!” said the Maven Real Estate co-founder recently while entering his favorite guest room overlooking Marquette Avenue and 6th Street.

While thrilled by the views, design and history, Peterson quickly noted the nearly hospital-grade air-filtration system, the air-quality monitors in each room, and

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AC Hotel Park City Opens as the City’s Newest Lifestyle Hotel

The MarketWatch News Department was not involved in the creation of this content.


PARK CITY, Utah, Nov. 26, 2020 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ —
PARK CITY, Utah, Nov. 26, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — AC Hotel Park City, owned by Ensign Hospitality, opens its doors on Dec. 7, 2020, inviting travelers to experience a hotel with style and intention in Utah’s cultured city. Part of AC Hotels by Marriott®, the design-driven hotel brand from Marriott International, this newly constructed hotel combines a small-town lodge feel with elegant, comfortable rooms and sleek, modern amenities, bringing purposeful design to Park City.

“We are excited to introduce AC Hotel Park City to our community near and far,” said Kirk Barker of Ensign Hospitality. “Park City is a year-round recreational haven, cultural hub, and distinctive venue for business, making it a perfect location for the well-intentioned AC Hotels guest.

AC Hotel Park City takes form with clean modern lines, aesthetically proportioned spaces, and balanced use of premium materials distinctive to the AC Hotels brand. The intuitive design was created to capture the majestic and wondrous spirit of the hotel’s surroundings and appeal to modern lifestyles. Embracing AC Hotels’ focus on harmonious design and tailored style, the hotel features minimalist guest rooms that allow travelers to use the space in whatever way they see fit. Free of traditional hotel room distractions, the 100 guest rooms are designed to maximize a sense of openness with plenty of open surfaces to place luggage or pull up a chair and work.

The AC Lobby features inviting furnishings, locally sourced art, and timeless, contemporary touches that evoke the feeling of a well-curated gallery. The AC Kitchen offers the brand’s signature European-inspired breakfast with options ranging from butter croissants imported from France, artisan cured meats such as thinly sliced Italian Prosciutto from AC’s iconic Berkel slicing machine, an international selection of cheeses, as well as yogurts and cereals, seasonal fruits, and local specialties. During the day, the AC Lounge® serves as a place to relax or create with maximum comfort and function in mind. In the evening, the AC Bar serves up a variety of signature cocktails, craft beers, and local wines paired with a Spanish-inspired tapas menu. The hotel also includes a state-of-the-art fitness center and indoor swimming pool with whirlpool.

Members of Marriott Bonvoy, Marriott International’s global travel program, have many of the hotel’s services at their fingertips with the Marriott Bonvoy App, including a digital room key, seamless check-in and check-out, as well as complimentary Wi-Fi.

Located just 35 minutes from the Salt Lake City International Airport, AC Hotel Park City is in close proximity to Park City’s wealth of activities, including a vibrant shopping district, exquisite dining options, and leisure options for all, including local breweries, Olympic Park and, most notably, the host of the International Sundance Film Festival in the winter.

To learn more about AC Hotel Park City, please visit www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/slcac-ac-hotel-park-city. 

Logos, product, and company names mentioned are the property of their respective owners.

About AC Hotels

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Palm Springs Margaritaville opens in former Riviera hotel

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The new Margaritaville hotel in Palm Springs is welcoming guests after a months-long renovation of the former Riviera property in uptown Palm Springs, marking the transformation of a historic Rat Pack-era property into a Jimmy Buffet-inspired getaway.

The opening comes amid a new, limited stay-at-home order in California with a 10 p.m. curfew, and as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urges people to stay home and not travel for the Thanksgiving holiday due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The 398-room hotel initially will open with about 60 to 75 rooms, Margaritaville’s chief operations officer Brad Schwaeble said. That will allow for maximum social distancing, and meet the tepid-but-present demand for leisure travel. 

“Obviously with health and safety being the primary concern, we don’t want to open the property at capacity. It wouldn’t make sense,” Schwaeble said. “Nor do I think the demand is there right now. This allows us to do it intelligently and as safely as you can currently.” 

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The front lobby of Margaritaville Resort Palm Springs is pictured in Palm Springs, Calif. The resort opened on November 24, 2020. (Photo: Vickie Connor/The Desert Sun)

The Margaritaville brand, inspired by singer’s Jimmy Buffett laid-back and beachy ethos, has more than 20 properties including locations in the U.S. and Mexico. 

The property is the first Margaritaville on the West Coast, with two properties under development in San Diego that are slated to open next year.

It’s the first new brand for the Riviera property since it opened in the late 1950s; the brand change was done after Davidson Hotels & Resorts that took over as operators of the property earlier this year. 

The hotel will be staffed with more than 100 former Riviera employees, Schwaeble said.

A pandemic-era hotel opening

Schwaeble said the local management team is paying attention to local and state protocols to ensure that the hotel is operating in line with coronavirus guidelines.

Safety protocols at the hotel include: 

  • Required face coverings in all public indoor spaces of the hotel, 
  • Cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing using COVID-19 approved products,
  • Wellness checks for staff members.

Beyond the hotel’s own policies, California has a face mask mandate requiring people to wear face coverings when not at home unless they’re outdoors and maintaining at least 6 feet of social distance from others not in their household.

The company is not “tone-deaf” to what’s going on, Schwaeble said, and though demand for travel has been a roller coaster in recent months, he anticipates there will be guests looking for fun and safe getaways.

He said hotels are seeing people book their trips a few days out, indicating an appetite for last-minute travel. 

“We’re excited to be opening a property and on the other side of it, we want to continue, we want to keep hospitality going,” he said.

“As a brand, we take all of this very seriously,” Schwaeble said.

Several amenities will not be available at first, including

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Australia opens up more borders in domestic travel boost, eyes vaccine

By Colin Packham and Renju Jose



a group of people standing in front of a building: People walk past a cafe after the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions were eased for the state of Victoria, in Melbourne


© Reuters/SANDRA SANDERS
People walk past a cafe after the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions were eased for the state of Victoria, in Melbourne

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia will lift more internal border restrictions in a boost for tourism as new coronavirus infections slow to a trickle, while first vaccines could be available in March, a government minister said on Tuesday.

Queensland state, a popular holiday destination, will allow visitors next week from the country’s two most populous states, New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria, after closing its borders in August.

NSW has since notched a month without any COVID-19 cases where the source is unknown and restrictions on arrivals from Sydney will be eased on Dec. 1, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.

Residents of Victoria, previously the country’s coronavirus hotspot, will also be welcomed if the state has no new cases on Wednesday, which would mark 26 days without community transmission.

“Queensland is good to go,” Palaszczuk told reporters in Brisbane.

NSW and Victoria opened their border on Monday, while the South Australia-Victorian border opens fully next week, in welcome news for local airline companies, Qantas Airways and Virgin Australia.

Qantas said it will run more than 1,200 return flights from Victoria and NSW into Queensland in the run-up to Christmas.

The moves will please Prime Minister Scott Morrison who has pushed state leaders to relax some curbs to help revive the economy, which shrank 7% in the three months to end-June, the most since records began in 1959.

Looking further out, Health Minister Greg Hunt said Australia – which has agreed to buy nearly 34 million doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine – is increasingly confident it can complete a vaccination programme after the release of preliminary trial results.

“Our vaccine timeline is beginning to strengthen. The news from overseas is that we are on track for first vaccines in March,” Hunt told reporters in Sydney.

AstraZeneca said its COVID-19 vaccine, cheaper to make, easier to distribute and faster to scale-up than its rivals, could be as much as 90% effective.

Australia has reported more than 27,800 cases of COVID-19 and 907 deaths since the pandemic began, but estimates there are fewer than 100 active COVID-19 cases remaining, mostly people in hotel quarantine.

Victoria said on Tuesday it had zero active cases for the first time in over eight months following a strict lockdown after daily infections peaked at more than 700 in early August.

Qantas, meanwhile, said it will insist in future that international travelers have a COVID-19 vaccination before they fly, describing the move as “a necessity”.

“We are looking at changing our terms and conditions to say, for international travelers, that we will ask people to have a vaccination before they can get on the aircraft,” Chief Executive Alan Joyce told broadcaster Channel Nine.

Australia closed its international borders in March and currently requires returning travelers from overseas to quarantine for two weeks.

(Reporting by Renju Jose; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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‘the modernist’ boutique hotel opens inside the former canadian embassy in athens

following the success of its first property in downtown thessaloniki (see previous coverage here), ‘the modernist’ opens a second boutique hotel, this time in athens. settled into the former canadian embassy in kolonaki, a high-end neighborhood in the historical heart of the greek capital, the hotel welcomes guests in a relaxed, elegant environment that seamlessly combines art deco elements, mid-century detailing and danish design. the brainchild of entrepreneur kostis karatzas, ‘the modernist athens’ has been developed with the same emphasis on local creativity as its counterpart in thessaloniki, introducing travellers to the city’s artistic community through highly-curated experiences.

 

‘the modernist is about contemporary hospitality that inspires curiosity and authentic experiences,’ says kostis karatzas about the project. ‘ethics and aesthetics course through everything we do, as an invisible thread that connects us with the world. following the opening of our first property in thessaloniki two years ago, athens was a natural next step for us. and this is only the beginning for our brand.’'the modernist' boutique hotel opens inside the former canadian embassy in athensall images by ioanna roufopoulou

 

 

‘the modernist’ athens sits on the southern slopes of lycabettus hill, a mere couple of miles from the acropolis, surrounded by world-class galleries and museums, great shopping streets and a vibrant nighttime atmosphere. occupying the former canadian embassy building, the hotel features a blend of the minimalism of post-war 1950s architecture, and the nowness of sleek yet subtle contemporary spaces. its design, developed by collaborating architects FORMrelated, is characterized by sharp contrasts in color and shape, an elegant material palette, custom lighting and made-to-measure furniture.exterior view of 'the modernist' boutique hotel in athens

 

 

upon entering the hotel, guests are met with an eclectic mix of hues and materials, including marble, plaster, bronze, and black glass, which define the lobby. on the ground floor, the breakfast buffet doubles as an all-day cafe bar, where plywood and marble blend together to create a warm atmosphere. the hotel’s common areas are complete with the rooftop garden, which also serves as an open cinema with breathtaking views of the acropolis. ‘the modernist’ also offers itself as an events epicentre, hosting workshops and talks by guest artists on its ground floor.'the modernist' boutique hotel opens inside the former canadian embassy in athens

 

 

the 38 rooms of the hotel spread across six floors, with four options – S,M,L,XL – that make it easy for guests to pick the one that best fits their individual needs. with the exception of a series of signature pieces in the lobby, selected from a mix of local and international interior design brands, the furniture, lighting and uniforms of ‘the modernist’ are custom-made. inside the guest rooms, oak wood floors, leather headboards and midcentury-inspired furnishings are combined with embossed veneer panels and bronze details. similar to its sister property in thessaloniki, ‘the modernist’ athens features contributions by local creatives, from ceramics and the artwork on walls to tailor-made music playlists, and even a vinyl collection that’s in the works.'the modernist' boutique hotel opens inside the former canadian embassy in athens

 

 

‘we see the modernist athens becoming a compelling value proposition not just in living but in the experience industry as well,’ say FORMrelated founders konstantinos theodoridis and eleni papaevangelou about the hotel’s

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Hong Kong reports spike in daily cases before travel bubble with Singapore opens

FILE PHOTO: A woman, wearing a face mask following the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, sorts luggage at Hong Kong International Airport in Hong Kong, China October 20, 2020. REUTERS/Lam Yik

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong reported a spike in daily coronavirus cases to 26 on Friday, two days before an arrangement with Singapore to allow a limited number of passengers to fly both ways without having to go through quarantine kicks in.

Hong Kong has been spared the dramatic escalation of coronavirus cases seen in other major cities, but the rise was big by its standards, with daily cases having mostly been in the single-digits or low double digits in recent weeks.

Of the 26 confirmed cases, 21 were local transmissions, prompting Health Secretary Sophia Chan to say the Chinese-ruled city “probably entered” a fourth wave of infections.

Hong Kong health authorities said another 40 people were likely to be infected, awaiting final confirmation.

It comes as a travel bubble between Hong Kong and Singapore is due to begin on Sunday.

Under the arrangement, people would be allowed to travel between the two cities without observing quarantine but must take a COVID-19 test before departure and upon arrival. There would be no restrictions on the purpose of travel.

Travellers would also have to take designated flights, with only Cathay Pacific 0293.HK and Singapore Airlines SIAL.SI having been selected to operate these flights for now.

If the COVID-19 situation deteriorated in either city the travel bubble would be suspended, the two governments have said.

Hong Kong has recorded around 5,500 coronavirus cases and 108 COVID-19 deaths since the pandemic began.

Reporting by Marius Zaharia; Editing by Ana Nicolaci da Costa

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Fairview Recreation Center opens as additional homeless shelter

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) – Amid a surging pandemic and a November cold snap, the Municipality of Anchorage is racing to find space to house a growing number of people who are experiencing homelessness.



a person sitting in front of a mirror posing for the camera: (KTUU/KYES)


© Provided by Anchorage KTUU-TV
(KTUU/KYES)

On Wednesday, 684 people needed a warm place to stay, according to Anchorage Homeless Coordinator Nancy Burke, marking an 18% increase since the beginning of September.

The pandemic has forced several shelters to operate at a reduced capacity, to allow for distancing. For instance, the Brother Francis Shelter capacity in the winter of 2019 was 240. Currently, it’s at 62.

The temporary emergency shelter inside the Sullivan Arena has a maximum capacity of 360, but has exceeded that count every night for the last month, Burke told members of the Anchorage Assembly Committee on Homelessness during a meeting on Wednesday.

“Last night that number was 407,” said Burke. “We drive to drive that number down by bringing on additional resources.”

Based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention specifically for Anchorage, the city has been looking to move toward more non-congregate sheltering options. In October, the city had secured 70 area hotel rooms to help decompress the shelter at the Sullivan Arena.

Now, it has 127 hotel rooms. But that is still not enough.

Over the weekend, the city turned the Fairview Recreation Center into a congregate shelter, providing capacity for an additional 49 people.

“We’re having the conversation about what’s next, actively and it’ll be a mix of, you know, more non-congregate locations… the municipality will probably go out to bid for some more rooms, and then if we can’t keep up with it, we’ll do as we did with Fairview, we’ll find another spot to open,” Burke said during an interview Wednesday.

In October, Burke said the plan for winter was to decompress the Sullivan Arena by moving people into temporary non-congregate units, such as hotel rooms, then move those individuals into housing through a rapid-rehousing program, creating space to further alleviate crowding at the Sullivan Arena.

That is still the plan, she said Wednesday, but the demand has increased faster than they’ve been able to keep up with.

“The Sullivan Arena is running a full 40 spaces over what we want to see it at right now,” she said. “So then if we want to leave more space for new people coming in, you know, we’d like to see that number down around 320 so that we would have the capacity to flex as new people come in, but we’ve been consistently running over.”

Burke anticipates the number of people needing shelter will continue to increase. She believes some people seeking shelter this year have previously found other ways to get by, such as warming up in a business lobby or going into a hospital, options removed by the pandemic.

“The unknown is how many people may be new to homelessness because of the pandemic,” she said.

Copyright 2020 KTUU. All rights reserved.

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East Library and Recreation Center opens its doors to the Arlington community | News

The City of Arlington’s East Library and Recreation Center, featuring an outdoor innovation space designed by UTA students, held its grand opening Monday.

The 47,249-square-foot building is the first collaboration between Arlington’s Parks and Recreation and Libraries departments and replaces the Hugh Smith Recreation Center and East Branch Library.

The recreation center is equipped with fitness and community rooms, a gym, a 113,000 gallon indoor pool, a child care center and senior lounge. The 8,500-square-foot library offers books in physical, digital and audiobook formats, as well as DVDs, free Wi-Fi and adult education classes.



East Library and Recreation Center opens its doors to the Arlington community

Lifeguards swim and demonstrate different areas of the pool during a ribbon-cutting at the East Library and Recreation Center on Nov. 9 in Arlington. The pool features a climbing wall, zip line and area for water aerobics.



Lemuel Randolph, Parks and Recreation director, said the project started around 10 to 12 years ago through the groundwork laid by the Parks and Recreation department, an invested City Council and citizen support.

The $26 million project was approved by Arlington voters, along with other community projects, in the 2014 Bond Election.

The library and recreation center will help nurture community identity, improve east Arlington neighborhoods and enhance lives, Randolph said.

Graduate architecture students Belén Vigil, Lydia Martinez and Iran Mejia were part of a 14-student group that designed the outdoor innovation space. The three attended the grand opening to talk about their design.

With an Innovation Zone grant, the team set out to extend technology access to the east Arlington community, designing pods and a gathering area.

Currently, the outdoor space has three pods with TVs, outlets, seating for two and fold-down tables. Once complete, there will be more tables and a canopy.



East Library and Recreation Center opens its doors to the Arlington community

Architecture graduate student Iran Mejia, left, talks with State Rep. Chris Turner during a ribbon-cutting at the East Library and Recreation Center on Nov. 9 in Arlington. Mejia was one of several College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs students who designed the new facility’s outdoor space.



Partnering with the Libraries and Parks and Recreation departments, the team sent surveys and met with community members to discuss what people of different age groups would want to see at the new location.

Through those interactions, especially with children, Vigil said they knew they needed to have a space for kids to play.

Libraries director Norma Zuniga said it was apparent how much Arlington loves its libraries because they have been growing alongside each other since the first library, a stored box of books, was started in 1923.

With advanced technology and over 30,000 items, she said the new library offers support for literacy and learning for all ages.

High school equivalency, English as a second language and citizenship classes are some of the adult education classes that will be offered along with workforce training.

“Libraries and parks and recreation make great neighborhoods,” Zuniga said. “The investment made in this community will leave a legacy for years

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Cumberland House Tapestry by Hilton hotel opens in downtown Knoxville

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Take a tour inside the newly renovated Cumberland House, a Tapestry Collection by Hilton hotel located by World’s Fair Park in downtown Knoxville

Knoxville News Sentinel

The $12 million top-to-bottom renovations to Cumberland House Knoxville, a Tapestry Collection by Hilton hotel, are visible at first glance. 

Once an inconspicuous white and beige Four Points by Sheraton located just west of World’s Fair Park, the seven-story hotel’s exterior is now black. 

Owner Peachtree Hotel Group hopes the property will become a landmark in downtown Knoxville thanks to the new look and a top-down renovation inside. 

“The property has been completely transformed,” general manager Tedra George said. “There’s not a single thing that remains from the previous (hotel).”

The renovation and redesign of the 130-room hotel, which opens Tuesday, was inspired by Knoxville’s rich history in textile manufacturing. Knox News got an exclusive sneak peek of this boutique, one-of-a-kind hotel, full of artistic details and ties to local partners. 

“We can have the luxury, really, of being able to create unique experiences, one-of-a-kind places for the guest. Because at the end of the day all of our travelers are looking for these more authentic, one-of-a-kind locations,” George said. 

Creative freedom under a boutique Hilton brand

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Tapestry, the 14th brand of the Hilton family, gives franchisees free rein to create original hotel properties that consumers crave, while still offering Hilton Honors benefits.

Launched in 2017, there are about 40 Tapestry properties worldwide, including the chocolate-themed Wilbur Lititz in Pennsylvania and the Black Fox Lodge in Pigeon Forge. 

“We have so much freedom in our creativity that at any point we can introduce something new and it’s not going to be frowned upon,” George said.

In keeping with the textile theme, Cumberland House is decked with rich colors, antique sewing machines and one-of-a-kind art pieces incorporating thread, buttons and scissors. 

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The bar in the lobby of the Cumberland House Hotel, a recently renovated Tapestry Collection by Hilton hotel on the edge of World’s Fair Park in downtown Knoxville, photographed on Wednesday, November 4, 2020. (Photo: Brianna Paciorka/News Sentinel )

“We wanted to create a moody atmosphere, and put this modern, also kind of vintage spin on it to tie into the history and then present day,” George said. 

The textile industry in Knoxville dates back to 1833. According to Knox Heritage, Knoxville Woolen Mills, Brookside Mills and Standard Knitting Mill were some of the city’s largest employers over the course of the next century.

“It’s such a rich history that not many people talk about, so we want to make sure that we continue to tell that story,” said George, who relocated to Knoxville in January. 

Cocktails when the bell rings

Guests in the lobby at 18:55 military time, or 6:55 p.m., will hear a train bell ring, commemorating the first passenger train to travel through Knoxville in 1855. 

When the bell rings, guests and patrons can head to Tussie-Mussie restaurant and bar

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