News for the Hospitality Executive
|By William J. Booher, The Indianapolis Star
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Apr. 7, 2004 - By year's end, Holiday Inn Select North At The Pyramids will be home to Indiana's only hotel indoor water park.
Construction of a five-story, 30,000-square-foot building is expected to begin as early as next week on what is now a parking lot on the north side of the Far-Northwestside hotel at 3850 DePauw Boulevard.
"This world class indoor water park will enable Holiday Inn Select North to attract families all year long and will provide the Midwest with a quality, value-added recreational experience," said Tim Worthington, president and chief operating officer of General Hotels Corp., the hotel's management company.
Indoor water parks are "on the cutting edge for hotels," said Rick Seegert, Holiday Inn Select North general manager. "It's a fairly new concept for hotels."
Seegert said the nearest hotel with an indoor water park is in Sandusky, Ohio.
"It has great potential to contribute to our ever-increasing destination for families that Indianapolis has become," said Bob Schultz, director of communications for the Indianapolis Convention & Visitors Association.
"The time has arrived for Indianapolis to add to the marketing mix," said Schultz, crediting General Hotels Corp.'s knowledge and foresight to recognize this market's potential for destination hotels.
"I was not surprised, even though it's the first one I'm aware of in Indiana" said John Livengood, president of the Indiana Hotel & Lodging Association, of the planned water project at Holiday Inn Select North.
"I think it is a trend," he said, noting they are a topic at hotel trade shows and now can be found at hotels in various locations across the nation and more being considered.
Seegert said the price tag to construct the new park is in the millions of dollars but he would not give specifics. The water park will have a tropical theme complementary to that of the hotel.
The water park will be connected on two floors to the 344-guest-room hotel.
The grand opening is planned for a late 2004 to coincide with the holidays and school breaks, Worthington said.
General Hotels Corp., which he heads, is based at 2501 S. High School Road in Indianapolis and manages 10 hotels in Indiana, including Holiday Inn Select North and Crowne Plaza Hotel and Conference Center at Historic Union Station.
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(c) 2004, The Indianapolis Star. Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News. IHG,