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 Ira Levy, Owner of the Hawthorn Suites in Rome, Georgia, 
Named the Hawthorn Suites 'Franchisee of the Year' 
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ATLANTA (April 30, 2007) - Ira Levy, Managing Partner for Battey Downtown Group LLC, owners and managers of the Hawthorn Suites Ltd. at River Crossing in Rome, Georgia, has been named the Hawthorn Suites 'Franchisee of the Year,' an honor presented to the franchisee who best represents Hawthorn Suites, the all-suites brand.  In 2004, the Hawthorn Suites in Rome sprung from what was once a rundown building to become a welcome addition to the city's downtown redevelopment. 

"Ira is committed to excellence and has worked tirelessly to make the Hawthorn Suites in Rome a success," said Roy E. Flora, Chief Operating Officer of US Franchise Systems, Inc. (USFS), parent company of the franchisor of the Hawthorn Suites brand.  "His hotel is among our brand's very best  and an important part of the redevelopment of Rome's central city."

The hotel also received the Quality Excellence Award with a quality and service rating of 95%, based on results of the Hawthorn Suites brand's ongoing Mystery Shopper program. 

Levy and his wife, Libby, have always had a penchant for old buildings and have renovated numerous projects around the country including their first restoration, a 19th Century rowhouse in Chicago, IL.  He moved with his family to Rome 22 years ago after the couple spied the city's Clocktower on a Sunday afternoon drive with their three children.  They were so impressed with all that Rome and Floyd County had to offer that they made the move and never looked back, and still believe it to be the ideal place to raise a family and retire.

Levy is an elected member of the Hawthorn Suites Franchise Advisory Council (FAC), and Vice President and Co-Partner of Paper Recovery of Georgia, Inc. He is a member of the Rome Rotary Club and Leadership Rome Alumni, and past member of the Rome Exchange Club, Kearney, Neb. Elks Club, and Gibbon, Neb. Jaycees.  He has served as President and Treasurer of the Rome Symphony Orchestra,  President and board member of Rodeph Sholom Congregation and the Rome Preservation Historic Commission.  He is currently on the board of the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation.

About Hawthorn Suites Ltd. at River Crossing

Hawthorn Suites at River Crossing is located at 100-110 West 2nd Ave. on the upper floors of two adjoining circa 1910 buildings in historic downtown Rome.  It anchors a multi-purpose project, with the main lobby, three-story open atrium, 12 retail shops, fitness center, two meeting rooms and business center all on the main level.  Adjacent to the hotel and retail shops is a restaurant located in the original home of a boiler repair facility that serviced steamships dating back to Rome's commercial activity in the 1800's. Rome's shopping district is within walking distance.

The 37 all-suites hotel features spacious studio, one- and two-bedroom suites, all with full kitchens and such in-room amenities as free wireless high-speed internet access, telephones with high-speed data access and voice mail, and free expanded cable television with HBO, CNN and ESPN.  The hotel offers complimentary hot breakfast buffet and evening social hour. 

There are 99 Hawthorn Suites hotels open or under construction across the U.S., Australia, Dubai, Israel, Kuwait and Turkey.  Guests can earn free nights at Hawthorn Suites and other Hyatt hotel brands by taking advantage of Hawthorn Suites' partnership in the Hyatt Gold Passport® frequency program.  Reservations may be booked online at www.hawthorn.com or by calling 1-800-527-1133 or TDD 800-824-2116 toll-free.  The Rome, GA hotel can be reached directly at 706-378-4837 and fax 706-378-8089.  All properties are independently owned and operated. 

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Contact:

Barbara Wiener-Fischhof
US Franchise Systems, Inc.
404-235-7400
barbara.wiener.fischhof@usfsi.com

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Also See: Mike Leven, Founder of US Franchise Systems, Retires from the Company and from the Hospitality Industry / February 2007
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