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The Woodlands (Houston), Texas, June 2017 … Summer isn’t always an easy time for children whose families cannot afford a summer vacation. This season, Benchmark Resorts & Hotels and Gemstone Collection properties in locations from Vermont to California, through their partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBBSA), will help 21 families enjoy a summer holiday. 

Big Brothers Big Sisters matches children facing adversity with caring adult volunteers in life-changing friendships. Many children come from low-income families or single-parent homes.  Families are often concerned with making sure children's basic needs are met, and extras like summer vacations may be unattainable. Benchmark is working to change that.

Throughout the summer, Benchmark will award vacation getaways that will include luxury hotel accommodations, and may include meals and an array of family-friendly activities, such as water sports, hiking, cooking classes, sightseeing, and more. BENCHMARK®, a global hospitality company, which includes the Benchmark Resorts & Hotels and Gemstone Collection brands in its portfolio, is a proud corporate partner of Big Brothers Big Sisters, providing in-kind services to select local affiliates of the nonprofit organization.

Big Brothers Big Sisters' staff will choose families to receive the summer vacations from BBBSA locations near the participating Benchmark properties. The company will encourage and promote involvement in the program via outreach to guests, employees, and corporate partners through social media channels and press outreach, inviting those who would like to "Join the Team" and send good wishes to the BBBSA summer vacation families to do so using the following link https://benchmarkresortsandhotels.lpages.co/bbbs-summer-2017/.  

“In all our community outreach programs, we actively include our guests, employees and owners, inviting their participation to create a true sense of ‘community’,” says Benchmark CEO Alex Cabañas. “By asking our friends to take a few moments to simply wish our BBBSA participants well, we can deepen the connection to the mission of this summer initiative and raise awareness of the incredible work the Big Brothers Big Sisters of America organization is doing with children throughout the country.”   

In 2016, Benchmark launched its partnership with BBBSA though its corporate outreach program, Hometown Hospitality - Caring for Our Communities.  As part of the partnership, Benchmark, through its hotel brands, Benchmark Resorts & Hotels and the Gemstone Collection, provides in-kind contributions worth more than $100,000 to BBBSA agencies in cities across the United States.

“As a family business with a strong familial culture, Benchmark sees Big Brothers Big Sisters as a natural partner,” says Cabañas, whose father, Burt Cabañas, founded Benchmark in the early 1980s. “Mentoring is a key part of that culture and our diverse workforce brings a special skill set to this partnership. Our motto is ‘Be the difference’, emphasizing how everyone can make a difference for our guests, fellow employees, investors, and within our communities.”  

Benchmark Resorts & Hotels participating properties:

-Nautical Beachfront Resort, Lake Havasu City, AZ
-Hotel Durant-The Graduate Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
-Forest Suite Resort, South Lake Tahoe, CA
-The Mayfair Hotel, Los Angeles, CA
-Cheyenne Mountain Resort, Colorado Springs, CO
-Beachwalk Resort, Hollywood Beach, FL
-The Gilchrist Club, Trenton, FL
-Turtle Bay Resort, North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii
-The Heldrich, New Brunswick, NJ
-Doral Arrowwood Resort, Rye Brook, NY
-Edith Macy, Briarcliff Manor, NY
-The Chattanoongan Hotel, Chattanooga, TN
-Hotel Contessa, San Antonio, TX
-Hotel Roanoke, Roanoke, VA
-The Inn at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
-Stonewall Resort, Roanoke, WV
-Snow King Resort, Jackson Hole, WY

Gemstone Collection participating properties:

-Garden of the Gods Club, Colorado Springs, CO
-Costa d’Este Beach Resort, Vero Beach, FL
-Villas of Grand Cypress, Orlando, FL
-The Essex Culinary Resort & Spa, Essex (Burlington), VT

About Gemstone Collection

The Gemstone Collection includes distinctive hand-picked properties in spectacular and popular U.S. destinations coast to coast. Each upscale resort and hotel destination provides highly-personalized service and luxury reflective of the charm and unique character of the destination, while in keeping with the collection’s shared mission and passion for excellence.  A distinguished portfolio of BENCHMARK®, a global hospitality company, which has been a leading US-based hospitality management company for nearly 40 years, the Gemstone Collection is the preferred choice of guests who yearn for inspiring and transformative experiences, customization over conformity, stimulation over predictability, and adventure over routine.  www.gemstonehotelcollection.com To become a fan on Facebook, visit www.facebook.com/GemstoneHotelCollection, or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GemstoneHotels, on Instagram at www.instagram.com/gemstonehotels, and on Pinterest at https://www.pinterest.com/benchmarkhotels/gemstone-hotels

Contact: Ken Ellens

KenEllens@aol.com / 201-758-2864

About Big Brothers Big Sisters of America

Big Brothers Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships that change their lives for the better, forever. Big Brothers Big Sisters ensures that the children in its program achieve measurable outcomes, including educational success, avoidance of risky behaviors, higher aspirations, greater confidence, and better relationships. This mission has been the cornerstone of the organization's 113-year history. With over 300 affiliates across the country, Big Brothers Big Sisters has served more than 2 million children ("Littles") in the past 10 years. Learn more at www.bbbs.org.

About Benchmark Resorts & Hotels®

Benchmark Resorts & Hotels® features the finest in lodging, dining, recreational and meeting accommodations.  Featuring unique and distinctive properties renown for exceptional service and for creating unforgettable memory-making experiences, it is the signature portfolio of BENCHMARK®, a global hospitality company, which has been a leading US-based hospitality management company for nearly 40 years.  Many Benchmark Resort & Hotels' properties are certified by IACC, the association that represents the finest meeting venues and services globally, and many have also been recognized with the coveted Benchmark Conference Centers® certification of meeting excellence.  www.benchmarkresortsandhotels.com.  To become a fan on Facebook, visit www.facebook.com/BenchmarkResortsandHotels  Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BenchmarkHotels, on Instagram at www.instagram.com/benchmarkresortsandhotels, and on Pinterest at  www.pinterest.com/benchmarkhotels

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