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UrbanAmerica and Pyramid Hotel Group Debut Former
International Plaza Resort and Spa as Doubletree Resort Orlando
Following $35 Million Dollar Makeover

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ORLANDO, Fla. (October 27, 2009) -- Doubletree Hotels has announced the opening of the brand’s largest hotel in Orlando, Fla.  Spanning 28 lushly landscaped acres in the heart of Orlando’s tourism corridor, the 1,094 room Doubletree Resort Orlando - International Drive has commemorated its official debut with a dramatic $35 million transformation. Formerly the International Plaza Resort and Spa, the Doubletree Resort is two minutes from the Orange County Convention Center and within walking distance of SeaWorld and its new Aquatica water park. The property is also minutes away from Orlando International Airport and Central Florida’s world-class attractions, shopping and dining. 
 
The new Doubletree Resort Orlando - International Drive is operated by New York-based UrbanAmerica, one of the nation’s foremost minority-controlled, real estate private equity firms, under a franchise agreement with a subsidiary of Hilton Worldwide.  Pyramid Hotel Group, LLC, a Boston-based full-service hotel management and advisory company, manages the property.
 
“The opening of the Doubletree Resort Orlando – International Drive is an excellent addition to our portfolio of more than 20 hotels and resorts throughout the state of Florida,” said Rob Palleschi, global head for Doubletree Hotels.  “With a location convenient to both Sea World and the Orange County Convention Center, the Doubletree Resort Orlando - International Drive provides travelers with our fourth great Orlando hotel in this major tourist and convention destination -- with each Doubletree strategically serving a unique leisure destination and travel experience in this city.”
 
The completely renovated hotel provides a tranquil oasis, featuring a Balinese-inspired theme with contemporary, dark-wood furnishings and Indonesian design accents set against a lush, tropical landscape. With a warm and inviting ambiance, the Doubletree Resort Orlando – International Drive offers something for every guest, from richly appointed guestrooms and sparkling, palm-tree-lined pools to majestic ballrooms and catering and event planning services. Amenities include three pools; three dining options, including a full-service restaurant and outdoor eateries; a casual, upscale bar; 60,000 square feet of flexible event space; a state-of-the-art fitness center; a business center; a children’s game lounge and more. 
 
“It’s an honor for our hotel to join the Hilton Worldwide family of leading, full-service hotels as the world’s largest Doubletree property,” says Richmond McCoy, president and CEO of UrbanAmerica. “The resort’s prime location and new upscale amenities will provide an ideal retreat for both business travelers and families in one of the country’s top tourism destinations.”
 
Contemporary Accommodations
The resort’s 1,094 guestrooms are available in three distinct floor plans, ranging from Resort Guestrooms, Tower Accommodations and Premium Accommodations to more than twenty suites ranging from junior-, one- and two-bedroom configurations to the property’s Premium Suites that include a spacious, 700 sq. ft., two-bedroom suite with plush living and dining areas that feature galley-like kitchen areas with granite countertops. Guestrooms welcome with comfy Doubletree Sweet Dreams® bedding and luxury linens, and spacious dark wood desks with large work areas. Among the high-tech amenities: 32-inch, LCD flat-screen televisions, MP3-compatible, stereo clock radios and high-speed wireless Internet access.
 
Designed for couples and families, each of the Resort’s Premium Accommodations features a kitchenette with microwave, coffeemaker and in-room mini-refrigerator.  Sleek, contemporary bathrooms have mosaic glass tiling, brushed stainless steel accents and sliding bamboo panels. Select premium guestrooms also feature hardwood floors. 
 
As an official Florida Green Lodging Facility, the Doubletree Resort Orlando – International Drive also follows a series of sustainable practices in their everyday business.  Guestrooms are equipped with water-efficient showerheads and recycling trashcans. Comfort sensors automatically adjust temperature settings to conserve energy when guests are not in the rooms.
 
Full-Service Dining
The Doubletree Resort Orlando – International Drive presents three dining options, including the casual full-service Bamboo Grille, serving breakfast buffets, lunch and dinner daily. Featuring contemporary American cuisine with an Asian-fusion twist, the 270-seat restaurant features artistic lighting elements, high-backed chairs and multiple seating tiers. Guests can also dine al fresco on the sunlit, outdoor terrace.
 
For on-the-go fare and sweet treats, Max’s Deli offers breakfast pastries and Starbucks® Coffee, as well as sandwiches, salads, a children’s candy bar and more. Visitors can enjoy tropical drinks poolside at Red Parrot Bar or relax and mingle in the contemporary Bangli lounge, featuring stylish décor, wall-mounted plasma TVs and a custom-designed bar set beneath a massive Capiz shell chandelier. 
           
Meetings and Events
For Orlando’s bustling meetings industry, Doubletree Resort Orlando – International Drive offers 60,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space, ranging from grand ballrooms to covered garden verandas. Each state-of-the-art meeting facility is equipped with the latest business services and amenities. 
 
The Oceans Conference Center in the main building of the resort totals more than 20,000 square feet of function space, with the largest ballroom on property at 12,000 square feet. Close to the restaurants and lounge, the Oceans Conference Center caters to groups of up to 1,000 guests.
 
Nearby, the freestanding Lakes Conference Center provides nearly 13,000 square feet of event space, including executive conference rooms, an outdoor patio and pre-function space. The 10,000-square-foot Great Lakes Ballroom seats up to 1,000 guests beneath soaring ceilings. For intimate gatherings and weddings, the Tower Terrace provides an elegant outdoor setting overlooking the resort’s lush, tropical landscape. 
 
Filled With Recreation Facilities
Major landscaping enhancements offer a variety of environments throughout the Doubletree Resort Orlando – International Drive. Within this lush, natural setting, guests can create their own personalized vacation experience without feeling confined to a single area of the resort. Quiet solace can be found in a palm-shaded hammock or in a secluded Polynesian hut. Families may enjoy quality time on the mini-golf course, putting green or in one of several of the resort’s gathering spaces. Three sparkling pools have also been enhanced with interactive water features, a children’s pool, private relaxation areas and brick-paver-lined sundecks and walkways.

Other amenities include a nine-hole miniature golf course, a full-service day spa and a high-tech children’s lounge with computers and Wii Nintendo game stations. Additionally, the fitness center is open round-the-clock, offering the latest cardio and weight-training equipment as well as four wall-mounted LCD televisions.
 
Available seven days weekly is the dedicated concierge desk assists with passes and complimentary shuttle service to Walt Disney World, as well as to the resort’s attraction partners -- SeaWorld Orlando and­ Universal Studios Orlando. Staff also can assist with making reservations at area restaurants, golf courses, and sporting and cultural venues. Among the hotel’s other services: 24-hour, personalized lobby check-in and checkout; valet service and gated self-parking; full-service catering; on-site car rental office and modern business center with wireless Internet access.
 
Members of the Hilton HHonors â guest rewards program can Double Dipâ and earn both airline miles and hotel points for every qualifying stay at the Doubletree Resort Orlando - International Drive.  Hilton HHonors is the only guest rewards program that allows members to earn Points & Milesâ for the same stay and redeem hotel points for free nights with No Blackout Dates.  With No Blackout Dates, members can redeem their Hilton HHonors points, as long as a standard room is available*.
 
“We look forward to showcasing our outstanding transformation to business and leisure travelers visiting the Orlando area.  Our guests will appreciate our refreshingly unexpected upgrades at the Doubletree Resort Orlando - International Drive and our friendly and attentive hotel team who look forward to welcoming every guest with one of the best reward programs in the industry and the brand’s legendary warm chocolate chip cookie,” said Greg Gooding, hotel general manager.    
 
For more information or to make reservations at the Doubletree Resort Orlando-International Drive, please call 1-800-327-0363 or visit www.doubletreeorlandoidrive.com.

About UrbanAmerica
UrbanAmerica, a minority-controlled, real estate private equity firm founded in 1998, is among the first registered investment advisors to participate in the revitalization of urban centers through the investment of institutional capital in commercial real estate. UrbanAmerica has raised $521 million in equity within its two funds and has acquired and developed more than 5 million square feet of building space with assets valued in excess of $2 billion. In addition, UrbanAmerica is the only urban real estate investment fund to receive three allocations of New Markets Tax Credits totaling $152 million for investments in its target markets. More information about UrbanAmerica is available at www.urbanamerica.com.
 
About Doubletree Hotels
With a growing collection of contemporary, upscale accommodations in more than 200 gateway cities, metropolitan areas and vacation destinations worldwide, Doubletree hotels and resorts are distinctively designed properties that provide true comfort to today’s business and leisure travelers.  From the millions of delighted hotel guests who are welcomed with the brand’s legendary, warm chocolate chip cookies at check-in to the advantages of the award-winning Hilton HHonors guest reward program, each Doubletree guest receives a satisfying stay wherever their travels take them.
 
Doubletree is part of Hilton Worldwide, a leading global hospitality company, spanning the lodging sector from luxurious full-service hotels and resorts to extended-stay suites and mid-priced hotels.  For 90 years, Hilton Worldwide has been offering business and leisure travelers the finest in accommodations, service, amenities and value.  The company is dedicated to continuing its tradition of providing exceptional guest experiences across its global brands.  Our brands are comprised of more than 3,400 hotels in 79 countries and include Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Hilton, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Hilton Grand Vacations.  The company also manages the world-class guest reward program, Hilton HHonors.  To find out more information or make reservations at any Doubletree hotel, travelers may visit our website at www.doubletree.com, contact their preferred travel professional or call 1-800-222-TREE in the U.S. and Canada.
 
 
* Hilton HHonors membership, earning of Points & Miles®, and redemption of points are subject to HHonors Terms and conditions.

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Contact:

Thomas Wingham
Doubletree Hotels Media
703-883-5315
thomas.wingham@hilton.com  

Sharlet Brennan or Melissa Renna
 RelationsYpartnership Public Relations
407-875-1111
Sharlet.Brennan@ypartnership.com
Melissa.Renna@ypartnership.com


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