Marriott International is gearing up for game day in its third year as the Official Hotel Partner across all 90 NCAA® championships. The is a multi-year partnership with Marriott International, NCAA, Turner Sports and CBS Sports. As Spring signals the start of March Madness®, fans will prepare to travel to this year’s Men’s Final Four® championship in Minneapolis from April 6-8 and the Women’s Final Four® championship in Tampa from April 5-7. Across the country, Marriott International hotels will welcome students, alumni, families and fans as they cheer on their favorite teams throughout the tournament.
Marriott International offers loyalty members elevated sports, food, music and entertainment experiences through Marriott Bonvoy Moments. Members have the opportunity to use their points to bid on exclusive Moments at the Men’s and Women’s Final Four® games, including the Ultimate Men’s Final Four Weekend Experience in Minneapolis and the Ultimate Women’s Final Four Weekend Experience in Tampa. One package is available for each Men’s Final Four and Women’s Final Four including tickets, VIP access and overnight accommodations.
“We are passionate about the spirit of community and comradery felt by so many when traditional boundaries are broken through sports. This resonates with our hotels, as we too place a strong focus on serving all guests around the world,” said Steve Heitzner, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Marriott International, Americas. “March Madness® and NCAA® represent more than a collegiate competition and we feel honored to be the meeting place for so many fans, students, alumni and athletes to continue the celebration after that final buzzer rings.”
“This is always one of the most exciting months for our collegiate athletes and their fans who travel near and far to watch our NCAA tournament games,” said Ellen Lucey, NCAA director of championships and alliances. “We are excited to have Marriott International as our corporate partner as Marriott supports our student-athletes and their achievements. The synergies between our brands are strong, which allow us to create memorable experiences for our colleges and universities and our fans.”
As fans travel from Louisville, Washington, DC, Anaheim and Kansas City to Minneapolis, Marriott International hotels look forward to being the home base for the many emotional moments experienced during March Madness®. In addition to the games, here are a few reasons why hosting cities are some of the top places to visit this Spring.
Louisville, KY isn’t just home of the Kentucky Derby’s Churchill Downs, but it also has an incredible art scene, booming with charming local shops. Those who stay at the Aloft Louisville Downtown, a modern hotel with retro-inspired interiors, can explore the best of the city. Those musically inclined can stroll down to Fourth Street Live! and enjoy live music by new and seasoned artists.
Anaheim, CA appeals to travelers of all ages and those planning to visit Disneyland® Resort and beyond. Anaheim Marriott is located in the city’s resort district offering the perfect location to explore. Guests can also head to the beach to try surfing or sailing and enjoy that California sunshine.
Washington, DC welcomes visitors to explore its many vibrant neighborhoods. Experience the District through the eyes of a local and go beyond the traditional sites on The National Mall. The luxurious JW Marriott Washington, DC on the famed Pennsylvania Avenue is located near the Capital One Arena, making it a prime home base for gameday travelers.
Kansas City, MO is a hotspot for some of the best barbecue, has a prominent jazz heritage, and fountains galore – there are more than 200 fountains throughout the city. Between the Sweet Sixteen® and Elite Eight® games, fans can hunt down as many fountains as they can or hit up some barbecue hotspots including the famed Joe’s Kansas City Barbecue, born out of a gas station. Sports fans can rest their heads after the big game at The Westin Kansas City at Crown Center.
Tampa, FL is hosting the Women’s Final Four® games, and is a city to watch over the next couple of years. The city boasts many new areas to explore like Sparkman Wharf which uses shipping containers for shops and restaurants, the new Tampa Riverwalk, a 2 mile stretch – brought more to life within the last year, including Armature Works, an upscale European food hall, as well as Water Street which is close to the championship games. Part of the National Register of Historic Places, the century-old Historic Federal Courthouse has been transformed into Le Méridien Tampa in the arts and entertainment district of downtown.
Minneapolis, MN is not only an unexpected foodie haven but it is also the host of the Men’s Final Four® championship. This year, in partnership with Marriott International, Buick will bring its fan favorite “Grab A Buick” fleet of vehicles to the Twin Cities in record numbers, providing fans free transportation during the Final Four® Festivities. The “Grab A Buick” will shuttle fans around and allow them to experience the new Buick lineup while exploring all that the Twin Cities has to offer. “Grab A Buick” hubs will be set up at more than 10 Marriott International hotels, the Mall of America and local hot spots around the city to enhance the fan experience. Travelers can check the Final Four App for additional details. After the excitement of the Final Four® games, sports fans can rest easy at the W Minneapolis – The Foshay, which merges Art Deco decadence with modern urban chic and take in 360-degree views of the city from the 30th floor observation deck.
Navarino Agora, a microcosm of handpicked experiences to launch on 1 July 2023
Costa Navarino, the sustainably driven destination in the Mediterranean, located in the Greek region of Messinia, southwest Peloponnese, introduces Navarino Agora. This new curated marketplace and incubator of art and culture will enrich the Messinian experience for everyone who visits or lives in the region. The contemporary take on the ancient agora concept, is in a privileged seaside setting at the Navarino Waterfront area and will open on 1 July.
Navarino Agora will welcome all guests and homeowners of Costa Navarino, as well as locals and visitors of Messinia, in a vibrant, multicultural environment where tradition meets modernity. The new market will showcase handpicked retail, restaurants and street food venues, an open-air cinema, VR entertainment, alongside a rich program of events featuring music and dance performances, art and book exhibitions, antiques bazaar and much more, introducing visitors to both local and international cultural experiences.
Across more than 20 retail venues, visitors will find a wide range of luxury and handcrafted clothing, shoes and beachwear, accessories, eyewear, jewellery, beauty and health products, books and homeware, alongside beauty and travel services, and a museum shop.
Various partnerships which encapsulate Costa Navarino’s multifaceted character and experience-based philosophy, will enrich the offering at Navarino Agora.
As part of the collaboration between the internationally acclaimed Kalamata Dance Festival and the Captain Vassilis and Carmen Constantakopoulos Foundation, Navarino Agora will host two dance performances during July. Within the same month, further events which aim to showcase the local cultural heritage will be held in partnership with the Foundation, starting with a music performance inspired by Ancient Messinia, while the first book bazaar will also take place.
In August, the first antiques bazaar will be held, while a classical music concert, part of the “International Kalamata Music Days” festival, will welcome visitors.
Through the strategic partnership with the Athens School of Fine Arts, students will showcase their work during the “Art Market” that will be held in September. Within the same month, the open-air cinema will host the curated program “Oxbelly Nights” in collaboration with Danaos Cinema and the renowned Greek nonprofit Oxbelly, founded by producer Christos V. Konstantakopoulos, presenting the opportunity to enjoy masterpieces on the big screen and have a discussion of the film with talent in attendance.
In a welcoming environment where creativity flourishes, Navarino Agora will also play host to portrait sketching, storytelling of myths and legends, and regular music and dance performances in association with local cultural organizations.
Complemented by a wide variety of dining options, ranging from Mediterranean and fusion cuisine to street food venues with Greek, Middle Eastern and seafood flavors, alongside ice-creams, wines and beverages, visitors will benefit from an abundant choice of offerings. The gastronomy front is further enriched through olive oil tasting sessions, introducing participants to its discerning characteristics and subtle flavors. Furthermore, Navarino Agora will host local cheese and wine pairings, a lively open-air market with fruit & vegetables, and a wine festival in October.
Hilton Expands Presence in Mexico with the Debut of Hilton Monterrey
Hilton today announced the opening of Hilton Monterrey, located in the business and financial district of the capital city of Nuevo León, Mexico. With an emphasis on efficient design and conscious travel, from its farm-to-table restaurant and energy-conserving technology, the 225-room property provides a modern urban oasis with the intuitive service and world-class amenities of Hilton Hotels & Resorts to deliver an exceptional stay for mindful business and leisure travelers.
“As our ninth Hilton property in this thriving metropolis and industrial hub, we are delighted to debut Hilton Monterrey as part of our growing portfolio in Mexico,” said Jorge Giannattasio, senior vice president and head of operations, Caribbean and Latin America, Hilton. “We look forward to welcoming guests and locals alike to this stylish hotel where they can experience our elevated accommodations and enjoy a cocktail at the rooftop bar, served with our signature hospitality for which Hilton is known.”
Hilton Monterrey is conveniently located just 23 miles from Mariano Escobedo International Airport in the heart of the commercial district and connected to Galerías Valle Oriente Mall. The modern city of Monterrey lies north of the Sierra Madre Oriental Mountain range. Although historically known as an industrial city, Monterrey is rich in history and art, with the hotel located five miles away from the Mexican History Museum, Paseo Santa Lucía, the Museum of Contemporary Art and Fundidora Park.
“We’re thrilled to bring Hilton Hotels & Resorts to Monterrey, growing our flagship brand’s ever-expanding presence and best-in-class hospitality offerings in Mexico,” said Leonard Gooz, global brand head, Hilton Hotels & Resorts. “Hilton Monterrey offers thoughtful service, energizing, inviting spaces beautifully designed to reflect the destination, locally influenced dining options and memorable meetings and events, delivering an exceptional stay for business and leisure travelers alike.”
Accommodations with Inspired Design
Under the creation of world-renowned hospitality design firm Hirsch Bedner Associates (HBA), Hilton Monterrey’s design concept highlights the city’s contrast of urban architecture and its surrounding natural beauty. A neutral palette offset by dark contrasting tones and elements of misty blue reflects the area’s beautiful landscape. Elements of stone, wood and metals combine to create a tranquil ambiance for relaxation or work.
Hilton Monterrey’s 225 rooms offer guests a choice of unobstructed city skyline views or sweeping mountain views paired with amenities that deliver the comfort and convenience for which Hilton is known, including complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi, 55-inch flat-panel HDTVs, a dedicated work desk, rainfall shower, ample closet space and more. The design places high importance on energy efficiency, from heat recovery systems to save natural gas, to water-saving toilet tanks and showers, and an automation system that maintains the rooms at a certain temperature when guests are out exploring the city.
The elegantly appointed presidential suite represents the height of sophistication at Hilton Monterrey with its floor-to-ceiling windows, spacious living area, kitchenette, well-appointed king bed, desk for a quiet work area, access to the Executive Lounge, and oversized, modern bathroom with a free-standing soaking tub.
Dining to Inspire the Senses
Hilton Monterrey is home to three onsite dining experiences for guests and locals alike. Chef Alejandro González leads Hilton Monterrey’s culinary vision using innovative techniques and creating experiences that go beyond the senses with dishes inspired by the traditional cuisine of Mexico and grounded on sustainable practices and respect of the seasonality of the local ingredients.
Farm-to-table seasonal restaurant Härth is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, serving local and international cuisine with sustainable ingredients from local and regional vendors. Dishes that will tantalize the taste buds include shrimp ravioli with spicy tuna tartar in a Huancaína sauce and Tetela, a triangular corn tortilla filled with duck confit, breaded egg yolk and pea sprouts, served over homemade mole. The hotel’s signature Härth Bar, located adjacent to Härth, serves all-day fresh cocktails with seating available on its terrace. On the rooftop, guests can discover Wander, the hotel’s rooftop bar and lounge serving up the best views in the city along with cocktails and a special selection of international street food.
Flexible Meetings and Events Space
With eight meeting spaces spanning over 12,000 square feet, Hilton Monterrey’s flexible event space can accommodate a variety of settings from small social gatherings to large business conferences. Venues include an exquisite pre-function foyer and outdoor terrace, the triple-height, 24-foot ceiling Magnolia ballroom that can host up to 600 attendees, a boardroom and individual meeting rooms named after native trees of Nuevo León, all with onsite catering support available.
Hilton Monterrey participates in Hilton Honors, the award-winning guest loyalty program for Hilton’s 19 world-class brands. Hilton Honors members have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount and free standard Wi-Fi, and access to the Hilton Honors mobile app.
Hilton Monterrey is the latest addition to Hilton’s rapidly expanding portfolio in Mexico, where guests are currently welcomed at approximately 90 hotels and resorts, with approximately 25 additional properties in development.
IMARAT signs Agreement to Construct its Fourth Hotel in Collaboration with Marriott International
IMARAT Group has signed a franchise agreement with Marriott International to develop a Courtyard by Marriott project in DHA Multan. The signing ceremony took place at Marriott International’s Office in Dubai.
Marriott International was represented in the ceremony by Satya Anand, President, Europe Middle East & Africa, Phil Andreopoulos, Chief Operating Officer, Owner and Franchise Services, Europe, Middle East & Africa, Chadi Hauch, Regional Vice President – Development, Middle East and Ziad Abi Raad, Director Lodging Development.
The event was attended by Chairman IMARAT Group, Mr. Shafiq Akbar, Director IMARAT Hospitality, Mr. Farhan Javed, IMARAT’s Chief Commercial Officer, Mr. Saad Ahmed Awan.
Chairman IMARAT Group, Mr. Shafiq Akbar, while speaking on the occasion, said, “On this day, we are elated to witness the culmination of years of effort; a collaboration with Marriott International to construct Courtyard by Marriott in DHA Multan. I see this project as the ‘Jewel of South Punjab’, a state of the art hospitality initiative that will give Pakistan’s, particularly South Punjab’s hotel and tourism sectors a much-needed economic boost”.
Satya Anand, President, Europe, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International commented, “We are delighted to strengthen our relationship with the IMARAT Group and expand our portfolio of in Pakistan. There is an unmet demand for hotel accommodation in South Punjab and with the Courtyard by Marriott Multan we look forward to supporting the expansion of the hospitality landscape in the market.”
Expressing his views at the signing ceremony, Group Director IMARAT Hospitality, Farhan Javed said, “IMARAT envisions and executes projects to take the hospitality sector of Pakistan to a level where we are at par with the international standards. By offering the best services in the hospitality business, Courtyard by Marriott is unquestionably on the verge of creating a benchmark in the sector.”
Since it first opened its doors more than 35 years ago, Courtyard by Marriott has been dedicated to creating an environment where great things can happen. Today, Courtyard is the hotel brand of choice for ambitious and enterprising guests who see business travel as a driver of personal fulfillment and professional growth.
Courtyard by Marriott is expected to be an ideal fit South Punjab and Multan. Multan, being the fifth-most densely populated city in Pakistan, serves as South Punjab’s economic and cultural hub. The new collaboration between Imarat and Marriott International aims to meet the demand for quality hospitality accommodation in the market.
IMARAT Group, one of Pakistan’s top real estate player, continues to construct and develop major projects that are coherent with the concept of transforming the real estate dynamics in the country. IMARAT’s top notch construction and property management seeks to assist Pakistan in making a name in the international hospitality sector.
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