Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort completed
the renovation of its meeting and event spaces. The
design and architecture of the project were inspired by
the surrounding scenery and the town’s coastal, serene
atmosphere. Hammered rock tables, driftwood-inspired
tables, blue-hued chairs and ocean-inspired artwork
can be found throughout the ballrooms, meeting
spaces and boardrooms. At the lobby level and on
the third floor there are refurbished meeting spaces
ranging from meeting and conference rooms to private
and public spaces. Both of the 360-room property’s
ballrooms were renovated and the 12,000-square-foot
Grand Ballroom can accommodate 1,000 people. www.
The 400-room Stanford Court Hotel completed a mul-
timillion-dollar renovation, including an updated arrival
and check-in experience, remodeled guest rooms and
corridors, redesigned lobby, updated meeting spaces,
the addition of a state-of-the-art fitness center in a glass
“greenhouse” environment and new local partnerships
and programming. The hotel’s design integrates San
Francisco’s history, culture and milestone moments with
the legacy of the hotel’s namesake, railroad mogul and
philanthropist Leland Stanford. Restored and relocated
to the hotel’s entrance is a three-ton, 10-foot-tall granite
penguin sculpture by renowned Bay Area artist Beniami-
no Bufano that for 45 years was “lost” in the landscape
at the corner of Pine and Powell streets. The newly
added Seven Stills Nob Hill offers craft beer and whiskey
tastings from local craft brewer and distiller Seven Stills.
Vail Marriott Mountain Resort
is undergoing a $25 million re-imagination with a new guest
room design and transformed meeting spaces.
The property is near completion of the transformation of its 350 guest rooms
and the entire first phase of
the renovation will debut with
the launch of the reimagined
Grand Ballroom, Grand Foyer
and Colorado Ballroom, totaling
25,000 square feet of meeting
space. This will include a new outdoor
veranda featuring a bar, fire features and private settees.
Sage Lodge opened on the banks of the Yellowstone
River less than 35 minutes away from Yellowstone
National Park. The property features an on-site casting
pond, spa, 7,000 square feet of meeting
and event spaces and hiking and biking
trails. Set on over 1,200 acres of
rural landscape, the property fea-
tures 50 guest rooms, including
a 34-room Lodge and four
standalone Cabins. The Grill
is an on-site restaurant with
indoor and outdoor seating
and featuring a menu that is
inspired by the open wood-
fired grill. The property’s
event facility, The Barn,
along with three small meeting
rooms and 1,800 square feet
of prefunction space and two
lawns can accommodate up to 180
In December 2018, the newest Gaylord Hotels property and latest member to Marriott’s Conven- tion & Resort Network is set to open its doors.
Just after leaving the Denver International Airport
you can’t miss the massive structure standing alone
in the distance that will soon debut as the Gaylord
Rockies Resort & Convention Center. Less than 20
miles from downtown Denver, the resort offers easy
access to and from the airport, downtown Denver
and the outdoor playground that are the Rocky
“There will be a complimentary shuttle from
the light rail train that runs from the airport to
Union Station in downtown Denver,” said Deanne
French, director of marketing for Gaylord Rockies.
With all the food and beverage outlets—there are
eight, indoor and outdoor pools, waterslides and lazy
river, full-service spa and salon, outdoor basketball
and tennis courts and 485,000 square feet of meeting
space—the resort is a destination within itself and it
might be hard to find a reason for attendees to leave.
I had the opportunity to take a hard hat tour of the resort
and to see how all of these amenities and offerings will come
together. Tying in local flair, a restored caboose car that was
once used on the Santa Fe Railroad is a centerpiece of the
Grand Lodge entryway at the Gaylord Rockies Resort.
Multi-story glass windows flank the facade of the
Grand Lodge, allowing for a spectacular view of the
Rocky Mountain Front Range that can be enjoyed
throughout the resort.
The 1,501-room Gaylord Rockies Resort & Conven-
tion Center will offer eight restaurants and bars, from the
brand’s signature steakhouse to the grab-and-go marketplace.
According to French, local brewery Dry Dock in Aurora will brew two beers
exclusive to the property.
“Our dining outlets will include Old Hickory, the signature restaurant within
the Gaylord brand; Vista Montagne, an Italian restaurant; Monte Jade, serving
Asian-fusion cuisine; and Mountain Pass Sports Bar, which will have Colorado’s largest television screen. It will be 75 feet by 14 feet,” French said.
The real highlight of the Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center for groups is its nearly 500,000 square feet of
meeting, exhibit and event space that can accommodate up
to 10,000 people. There are 84 meeting rooms and additional spaces include the nearly 175,000-square-foot Aurora
Exhibition Hall, 34,781-square-foot Colorado Ballroom and an
outdoor event lawn with the capacity for 2,000 attendees.