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The Retirement Systems of Alabama's Hotel Management Company, 
PCH Hotels and Resorts, Opens the Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf
Resort & Spa on Alabama’s Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail
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WASHINGTON – Aug. 18, 2005 – Renaissance Hotels & Resorts, an upscale, full-service brand of Marriott International, Inc. (NYSE:MAR), today announced the opening of the Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa.  The resort is the first Renaissance resort in Alabama and is situated at 4000 Grand Avenue, nestled along the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail in Birmingham.  The 259-room upscale resort is owned and operated by PCH Hotels and Resorts, the hotel management division affiliated with the Retirement Systems of Alabama (RSA.)  
“While the resort, golf course and amenities are incredible, it is our staff that brings this resort to life,” said Steve Miller, general manager of Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa. “We have an experienced and enthusiastic staff that is prepared to take hospitality in Birmingham to a new level.”
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Designed for savvy business leaders, as well as the pampered traveler, each room has a balcony overlooking the golf course. All guest rooms feature Marriott’s new, more luxurious bedding with plusher mattresses, softer sheets and more pillows.  Replacing the traditional hotel bedspread is a down comforter nestled inside sheeted duvets, which will be freshly laundered for each new guest.  The bedding will feature 300-thread-count, cotton-rich, white top and fitted bottom sheets, which are among the finest and softest sheets of any global hotel chain.  Also, thicker, more comfortable mattresses with the addition of two- to four-inch mattress toppers will be featured in the rooms. The stylized bedding is accented with euro shams, a decorative bed scarf and a bolster. The guest room bathrooms, with marble flooring, feature a sunken tub and separate shower.  Other amenities in the room include coffee maker, iron with ironing board, in-room safe, CD player, and cable TV with premium channels.

In addition to luxurious accommodations and amenities, the resort features the third longest golf course in the world on 330 acres of pristine fairways. Considered to be the gem of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trial, the 8,191-yard, PGA-quality golf course is challenging for skilled players, yet enjoyable for casual golfers, and offers stunning views, including a 1,000-yard cascading waterfall and two connecting lakes. 
The signature restaurant, Brock’s, specializing in steaks, is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  JT’s Bar & Lounge is opened daily and serves sushi and light fare. The Clubhouse Restaurant, with views of the golf greens, serves breakfast and lunch.  The Coffee Shop serves Starbucks coffee throughout the day.  Room service is available 24 hours. 

The 12,000-square-foot, full-service spa allows guests to indulge in massages, body treatments, facials and scrubs in a tranquil, “Zen-like” atmosphere with bamboo flooring, subtle lighting and soothing colors.  Some of the signature treatments include The Ultimate Caviar Facial, Southern Pine Rescue body treatment and a Reflexology Massage.  A full-service salon is also available.

Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa is RSA’s fifth Marriott-brand resort.  Other RSA-developed Marriott properties on Alabama’s RTJ Golf Trail include the Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Pt. Clear, the Montgomery Marriott Prattville Hotel and Conference Center at Capitol Hill in Prattville, the Auburn Marriott Opelika Hotel and Conference Center at Grand National in Opelika, and the Marriott Shoals Hotel & Spa in Florence.  

Surrounded by mountains and featuring stunning architecture, Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa has a retreat atmosphere, yet lies near the heart of downtown Birmingham. The resort features 20,000 square feet of meeting space designed for weddings, corporate meetings and other special occasions.  

About PCH Hotels & Resorts

PCH Hotels & Resorts, the resort division of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, is a collection of world-class hotels located throughout Alabama and designed for ultimate comfort and customer service. From the historic Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club and Spa to the new Marriott Shoals Hotel & Spa in North Alabama, PCH Hotels & Resorts maintains exceptionally high standards for group meetings. The seven PCH hotels range from 90 to over 400 guest rooms and have meeting spaces of all sizes. Meeting facilities combine advanced technology, a resort atmosphere and Marriott expertise. PCH properties are Marriott and Renaissance brands and participate in the Marriott Rewards program.

PCH Hotels & Resorts is a hotel management company, and is invested by The Retirement Systems of Alabama, one of the nation’s largest and strongest pension funds, under the direction of CEO Dr. David G. Bronner.

Hotels:

Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa
Auburn Marriott Opelika Hotel and Conference Center at Grand National
Montgomery Marriott Prattville Hotel and Conference Center at Capitol Hill
Riverview Plaza Hotel
RSA Battle House Hotel
Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa
Montgomery Hotel
Marriott Shoals Hotel and Spa

History of RSA/RTJ and Connection to PCH:

In the late 1980’s, two very important concerns were on the mind of Dr. David Bronner, CEO of Retirement Systems of Alabama. First, how to effectively diversify the assets of the state’s pension fund; and second, how to help the state of Alabama. His philosophy was this: “The stronger the Retirement Systems of Alabama can make Alabama, the stronger the Retirement Systems will be.” With that in mind, and borrowing a page from the Field of Dreams movie script, Bronner decided to build-it-and-they-will-come – not a baseball diamond in a corn field, but a dazzling collection of public golf courses in the great state of Alabama.

The late golf course architect Robert Trent Jones Sr. saw the group of public courses he designed in Alabama as his version of Michelangelo’s masterful artwork in the Sistine Chapel. The 21 courses are now called the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, a total of 378 holes at eight locations across the state. The Trail’s long list of accolades includes recognition as the best value in the world of golf destinations, according to a Golf Digest survey. Golfers in the same survey also put the Trail among the top eight in the world for quality of golf.

The Trail’s artfully designed and beautifully landscaped courses are complimented by equally magnificent hotel accommodations. Point Clear Holdings Hotels & Resorts, formed in 1999 with the purchase of the Grand Hotel Marriott in Point Clear, is a collection of world-class hotels located throughout Alabama, designed for ultimate comfort and customer service. Guests at PCH hotels rely on fine dining, resplendent furnishings, and a dedication on the part of all PCH staff to provide their guests with a truly memorable experience.

As part of the Resort Division of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, PCH Hotels & Resorts are designed to meet the needs of visiting golfers and business clientele alike. Meetings and corporate retreats at a PCH hotel represent the ultimate blend of business and pleasure. State-of-the-art technology, spacious meeting facilities and an experienced meetings and events staff provide everything a company needs for meetings, large and small.

MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL, INC. (NYSE:MAR) is a leading lodging company with more than 2,600 lodging properties in the United States and 65 other countries and territories.  Marriott International operates and franchises hotels under the Marriott, JW Marriott, Renaissance, Bulgari, The Ritz-Carlton, Courtyard, Residence Inn, SpringHill Suites, TownePlace Suites, and Fairfield Inn brand names; develops and operates vacation ownership resorts under the Marriott Vacation Club International, Horizons, The Ritz-Carlton Club and Marriott Grand Residence Club brands; operates Marriott Executive Apartments; provides furnished corporate housing through its Marriott ExecuStay division; and operates conference centers. The company is headquartered in Washington, D.C.  


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Contact:

Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa
(205) 916-7677
www.rossbridgeresort.com

Colleen Evans/Mark Indre  
 Marriott International   
 (301) 380-8257/3102  
   colleen.evans@marriott.com  

Bill Lang
PCH Hotels & Resorts 
(205) 298-7128
bill.lang@pchresorts.com

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Also See: Anthony Davis Appointed Chief Financial Officer for PCH Hotels & Resorts / September 2004
The Former 377 room Adam’s Mark Mobile Purchased by Retirement Systems of Alabama from the Presidio Group; Will Undergo a $15.7 million Renovation / July 2004


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