News for the Hospitality Executive
|By Sarah K. Winn, The Charleston Gazette, W.Va.
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
April 20, 2006 - Spurred by growth in Morgantown’s Wharf district and customers’ comments, the Radisson Hotel at Waterfront Place will have a new name and expanded amenities, beginning June 1.
“The customers want something that is unique and different,” said Joe Duperre, the hotel’s general manager. “This is going to be a destination.”
The Radisson Hotel at Waterfront Place will become the Waterfront Place Hotel, disaffiliating with the Radisson chain. Waterfront Place will be a “boutique-style hotel,” similar to the W Hotels chain, Duperre said.
A concierge will be in the lobby and free wireless Internet will be offered throughout the building, he said. Upgraded amenities, such as recognizable brands of toiletries, will be in the guest rooms, he said.
The process to become an independent hotel began six months ago, he said.
The hotel owners, Mermaid LLC, feel the change in style will capitalize on an already booming market, spokeswoman Aly Goodwin Gregg said.
“Having a hotel that is unique to this area will absolutely be a benefit to us in the long run,” she said.
The hotel, which opened in 2003, has more than 200 guest rooms with 10 luxury suites, along with a fitness center, a spa and salon, a restaurant and lounge. It also features 10,000 square feet of conference and meeting space, including 14 conference rooms.
The split from the Radisson chain was a natural move, Duperre said.
“We are not the typical Radisson hotel,” he said. “Our facilities are superior...we are above brand average in all categories, but the customers still wanted a unique experience. We thought, if we had an independent boutique hotel, we could provide that.”
Even though the hotel will be leaving the Radisson chain, the staff and ownership will not change, nor will room rates, he said. Also, current reservations and confirmation numbers remain the same, but Radisson Gold Points, a customer reward program, will not be accepted.
“It will be absolutely seamless,” Gregg said. “It will be a change of the name and their guest experience will get better.”
To contact staff writer Sarah K. Winn, use e-mail or call 348-5156.
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(c) 2006, The Charleston Gazette, W.Va. Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News.