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June 26, 2013 --Downtown Milwaukee's new 205-room Marriott hotel opens Wednesday, weeks ahead of what had been a planned mid-July opening.

The hotel, at 323 E. Wisconsin Ave., gives Marriott International Inc. its first full-service brand, with a banquet room and restaurant, in downtown Milwaukee, where there are three other Marriott brands: Residence Inn by Marriott, Courtyard by Marriott and the newly branded Fairfield Inn & Suites -- all west of the Milwaukee River.

Milwaukee was among the largest U.S. cities that lacked a full-service Marriott hotel. The $54 million hotel, with 130 full- and part-time employees, combines new construction with renovated portions of the Wisconsin Ave. buildings.

The historic touches include archways carved from a Cream City brick wall in the restaurant, and the original window frames in the second-floor concierge lounge overlooking Wisconsin Ave.

The Marriott's main competitors are the Pfister Hotel, InterContinental Milwaukee Hotel, Hilton Milwaukee City Center, Hyatt Regency Milwaukee and Doubletree Milwaukee City Center -- all featuring banquet facilities and full-service restaurants.

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