March 05, 2015 // Franchising.com // NEW ORLEANS - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT) today announced the debut of Le Méridien New Orleans, following a comprehensive $29 million conversion of the former W Hotel. The renovation touched all aspects of the hotel, including a redesign of all 410 guestrooms, the debut of three new food and beverage outlets, the addition of the signature Le Méridien Hub (the brand’s reinterpretation of the traditional lobby), and the modernization of the porte-cochere valet entrance. The multimillion dollar renovation added 1,600 square feet of new, flexible meeting space (for a total of 20,000 square feet of meeting and event space) as well as a new landscaped palm garden incorporating large-scale artwork and outdoor seating for guests, with the ability to host private events.
“New Orleans is a world-class city that shares in our passions for culture, cuisine and the arts,” said Brian Povinelli, Global Brand Leader for Le Méridien and Westin. “Le Méridien New Orleans unlocks the destination for our creative and curious minded travelers through unique local programming that brings to life The Crescent City’s distinct flavours and rich cultural scene.”
The pristinely modern hotel is comprised of 410 fully redesigned guestrooms, including 22 stunning suites; three new food and beverage outlets, including LMNO, the destination restaurant featuring New American cuisine with Cajun and Creole touches; and the addition of 1,600 square feet of flexible meeting and event space for a total of 20,000 square feet of refreshed areas within the hotel. The contemporary design of Le Méridien New Orleans incorporates artwork inspired by the cartography and geography of New Orleans as seen from an aerial perspective. The design also features patterns and textures influenced by cultural and architectural elements, creating discovery moments for guests at every turn.
Centrally located on Poydras Street, Le Méridien New Orleans is adjacent to the Arts District and just a few blocks from the jazz clubs, restaurants and night clubs of the world-famous French Quarter. Nearby attractions include Harrah’s Casino, the Warehouse District, Contemporary Arts Center, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, Outlet Collection at Riverwalk and the French Market.
“Watching our hotel undergo such a significant transition has been an exhilarating journey,” said John Thompson, General Manager of Le Méridien New Orleans. “We are thrilled to unveil our beautiful new hotel and look forward to showing our guests a new perspective on the Big Easy.”
To fete the opening of Le Méridien New Orleans, the hotel will host a First Night celebration on March 5th. Guests of the event will be invited to experience many of the global programs that the brand is best known for – taste mouthwatering fare from LMNO; sip Sparkling aperitifs from Longitude 90; enjoy a live performance by French bossa-nova band, Nouvelle Vague; and sample Chef Johnny Iuzzini’s newest Éclair recipe inspired by the Crescent City itself. Iuzzini will also attend the event to premiere the latest episode of The Éclair Diaries which accompanies him around New Orleans gathering culinary inspiration for this recipe.
Launched in 2011, the signature Le Méridien Hub™ reinterprets the traditional hotel lobby into a social gathering place, building on the brand’s award-winning Arrival experience and coffee culture. Le Méridien arrival consists of four elements: large-scale artwork in high impact areas; sensory experience, illustrated through the LM01 signature scent, sound and use of light; UNLOCK ART™ programme, featuring artist designed key card collections that offer access to Le Méridien affiliated contemporary cultural centers in the destination; and a 24-hour soundtrack, now curated by Nouvelle Vague. Each Hub also features a Master Barista, a recently launched initiative to meet the growing demands of coffee lovers at every Le Méridien hotel worldwide. Master Baristas lead coffee-related initiatives at each hotel, serve as a coffee cultural ambassador, and maintain knowledge of current coffee trends within the destination.
For more information, visit www.lemeridienneworleanshotel.com. Connect with Le Méridien New Orleans on social media through Facebook at www.facebook.com/lemeridiennola and on Twitter and Instagram @lemeridiennola.
Le Méridien, the Paris-born hotel brand currently represented by nearly 100 properties in more than 40 countries, was acquired by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT) in November 2005. With more than 80 of its properties located in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific, Le Méridien provided a strong international complement to Starwood’s then primarily North American holdings at the time of purchase. Since then, Le Méridien has gone through a brand re-launch, which included a large scale hotels product consolidation and redefined brand strategy. Through creation of the LM100 artist community, Le Méridien has transformed numerous guest touch points, thus bringing unique, interactive and curated experiences to its guests. Plans call for dynamic expansion of Le Méridien Hotels and Resorts within the next five years, concentrating on markets in Asia-Pacific and the Americas. Le Méridien recently opened new hotels in New Orleans (Louisiana, USA), Bangkok (Thailand), Chicago (Illinois, USA), and Tampa (Florida, USA) and will open in the next 12 months in Mahabaleshwar (India), Gandhinagar (India), Dhaka (Bangladesh), Charlotte (North Carolina, USA), Columbus (Ohio, USA), New Delhi (India), Thimphu (Bhutan), Paro (Bhutan), Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), Qingdao (China), Putrajaya (Malaysia), Leshan (China), and Indianapolis (Indiana, USA). For more information, please visit www.leMéridien.com or www.facebook.com/leMéridien. Follow @LeMéridien Hotels on Instagram and Twitter.
SOURCE Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Peter Mayer New Orleans
Global Public Relations