New Melia to Open in South Beach

Sol Melia will be managing the Royal Palm Hotel in South Beach announced Guy Mitchell, president of The Mitchell Companies - principal investor in the property. The hotel, currently known as the Royal Palm a Crown Plaza Resort, will undergo a multi million-dollar refurbishment to be completed by the end of 2005 and branded as Melia Royal Palm. Sol Melia will take over management of the hotel on July 1, 2005 and will operate it as the Royal Palm hotel until the renovations are complete. This oceanfront resort is located in Miami Beach on 1545 Collins Avenue in the heart of South Beach. It is steps away from Lincoln Road and Ocean Drive, renowned restaurants, outdoor cafes, designer specialty shops and Miami’s hottest nightclubs.
“We are extremely excited about bringing the Melia brand to South Beach,” stated Andre P Gerondeau, executive vice president North America and the Caribbean for Sol Melia Hotels and Resorts. “Melia Hotels have been extremely successful in major cities and this will bring the success and the high level of energy of the brand into the states. The new look will give the Melia Royal Palm this dynamic feel combined with the eclectic mix of Sol Melia’s lifestyles and infuse it with a new, fresh contemporary concept that will envelop the passion by design of the Melia brand.”
“The Melia Royal Palm joins Sol Melia’s portfolio as our fourth market in the U.S., Chicago, New York and Puerto Rico being the others,” Gerondeau added. “As part of our strategic plan for growth into the American market, we plan to have 10 properties in the next five years through partnerships and/or management agreements.”
Sol Melia currently ranks as the third largest hotel company in Europe and the largest resort company in the world, with success in major cities such as Madrid, London, Sao Paulo and Mexico City. Sol Melia will be key in the repositioning of the Royal Palm, offering a worldwide network of sales and marketing through regional offices in 15 countries around the globe. Its strong relationships and preferred agreements with both offline and online intermediaries will bring the Royal Palm access to thousands of distribution channels. Its loyalty programs for clients (MaS) and travel agents (Club Amigos) offer a strong database and alliances with numerous airlines and other redemption partners.
The hotel, which consists of two towers totaling 417 rooms, will undergo a considerable investment to create a totally new design, including a new signature restaurant and bar. Located right on the ocean, the Melia Royal Palm will feature all the amenities and services expected by both the luxury leisure and business traveler, including meeting and banquet space, a first-class, full-service spa with 10 treatment rooms as well as outdoor treatment areas and a first rate workout facility.
“There will be a complete repositioning of the property,” stated Graham Downes, CEO of Graham Downes Architecture, San Diego, CA. “The property is a historic hotel therefore the changes will not be done to the exterior, but rather through the furnishings and atmosphere of the hotel. We want to make this a place that people will put on the top of their list when looking to stay in South Florida by modernizing current lifestyle trends and giving them all the amenities and services they are looking for.”
The lobby of the hotel will move to a larger area in the heart of the hotel, while the current check-in area will be converted into a martini bar at night and a water bar during the day.
“The atmosphere of the hotel will be totally different by day than by night,” added Downes. “For example, guests will be coming to the property to be recharged by the pool or in the spa during the day and then experience a high-energy scene at night.”
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