|By Ed Waters Jr., The Frederick
News-Post, Md.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News
Nov. 20, 2012--The opening of a $13-million, 73,000-square-foot hotel in Frederick shows that this is the right place for investment and growth, according to Frederick County Commissioners President Blaine Young.
Elected officials, Marriott Corp. executives, and executives of the Plamondon Hospitality Partners, which built the hotel, gathered Monday for the formal opening and a tour of the hotel, which is in the final stages of pre-certification as a silver-level Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design building.
Heather Langford, director of LEED programs for the U.S. Green Building Council, called the Plamondons pioneers for their commitment to sustainability and environmental responsibility.
John Fieseler, executive director of the Tourism Council of Frederick County, said travelers are looking for hotels that provide a healthier environment and for businesses that consider eco-friendly construction and services.
Loren Nalewanski, vice president of Global Brand Management, said the Frederick TownPlace Suites is only the second LEED-design hotel in the 210-chain brand. The other LEED TownPlace Suites is in Denver and opened earlier this year, Nalewanski said in an interview following the formal presentation.
"You are talking about people who stay here for months, not just a day or two," Nalewanski said, noting that TownPlace Suites offers kitchens and other amenities for long-range stays by customers.
Young said Peter Plamondon Jr. and Jim Plamondon, co-presidents of the business, were carrying on the tradition of their father, Peter Sr., in emphasizing that people are the most important factor in the success of any enterprise.
Caring about people, from employees to customers and the community, is the foundation of the corporation as well, said Liam Brown, president of Marriott International.
Young said he saw the hotel as not only boosting the local economy, but as a trend toward environmentally friendly businesses in the community.
"We also are looking into water and sewer and other permit discounts because of the LEED certification," Young said. The Plamondons are carrying on a business expansion spanning more than three decades. The company owns the Roy Rogers brand and oversees restaurant operations and has hotels in both Frederick and Washington counties.
The Plamondons donated $1,000 to the American Red Cross during the presentation to help victims of Superstorm Sandy. Jefferson Thomas, senior design manager for architecture and construction for Marriott International, said the corporation is working to make going green easier for those building Marriott hotels.
"We provide a prototype design and help them through the certification process," Thomas said in an interview. The program includes everything from design and materials to recycling to water and air quality inside the hotel and in the environment.
(c)2012 The Frederick News-Post (Frederick, Md.)
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