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April 12--A year after it began, Westin Huntsville's $7 million renovation is complete.

The AAA-rated four diamond hotel saw a complete remodeling of all of its guest rooms, for a full complement of 232 rooms with 22 new deluxe rooms and suites.

But each room, as well as the new features on the ground floor, are designed with a distinctive style that signals comfortable elegance, said Andrew Dorough, general manager.

"This is a world class hotel, where everything is high quality, but it's not stiff," he said. "You can set your own rules."

This is reflected in the rooms themselves. Instead of straight lines, some features in the rooms are slightly off-center. The bed is tilted slightly from the wall, as is the artwork on the walls. The mirror also projects out. It's a subtle way of letting the guest know that he can be comfortable.

Entering through the front, there are several aspects that immediately catch the eye. There's the 10-foot wide centerpiece chandelier, with more than 100 hanging pendants. There's a living plant wall with greenery and flowers which can be switched out, depending on certain corporate guests. It was designed with the age of the Selfie in mind.

A new addition is the Trieste Cafe, serving Starbucks beverages and baked goods. There's also a revamped Sage Grille Bar & Restaurant, offering meals all day until 10 p.m. and drinks until midnight. The area can serve up to 130 people, with an intimate drink area combining soft, electric colors and comfortable space.

Westin Huntsville now has an 8,000-square-foot ballroom and meeting space, with conference room and gathering areas elsewhere. The ballroom can accommodate up to 500 for dining, or 850 people for a reception, Dorough said.

Next month will see the opening of Portofino's Pool Bar & Grill outside. The bar area can accommodate people just visiting for a quick drink after shopping at nearby Bridge Street Town Centre. The seasonal outdoor pool, while remaining for guests, offers a nice accompanying atmosphere.

Westin's corporate image is crafted with the fit traveler in mind, which is why the hotel's fitness studio has New Balance equipment. Guests can even check out their own pair of workout shoes.

The hotel is pet friendly, which is why guests can have their own Westin Heavenly Pillowtop bed, and so can the family dog. Presidential suites have two beds, two baths and a full kitchen. There was also an upgrade on the hotel's high speed Internet.

Westin Huntsville is the only Westin property in the world which also has the company's extended stay brand, The Element, under the same roof. The Element, which opened last year, occupies floors 7 through 11. Guests for it enter through a different elevator, and enjoy a complimentary hot breakfast and an evening happy hour.

Rooms at the Westin start at $129 a day, with the Presidential Suites from $499 and up.

"We looked at what our guests wanted, and there was a lot of investment in small things that can make a big difference," Dorough said. "There's an attention to detail that we think pays off for every guest. The feedback we've been getting has been overwhelmingly positive."

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