New and Improved Meetings Hotels 2020

While the world stayed at home, these 12 properties finished renovations or prepped for grand openings.

El Capitan in Merced, Calif., is a remake of a 19th-century hotel.
El Capitan in Merced, Calif., is a remake of a 19th-century hotel.

While most of the world has been conducting business from home, construction workers and craftspeople at a number of hotels have been putting the finishing touches on new-builds and renovations. The following 12 properties are either opening for the first time or will reopen with new looks this year.

Kimpton Armory Hotel

Bozeman, Mont.

Coming to downtown Bozeman this summer is the 122-room Kimpton Armory, a reimagining of the town’s 1941 National Guard Armory building. Art Deco design gives the restoration its unique look, and the addition of a new tower and its Sky Shed rooftop lounge will offer panoramic views of the Rocky Mountain setting. Fielding’s, named for the building’s original architect, Fred Fielding Willson, will serve seasonal upscale American fare. The Tune Up basement bar will serve up live music, hearty dishes and an extensive whiskey selection; live shows and events also will take place at the Armory Music Hall. The property will have 8,000 square feet of meeting space. 
Groups that want to get out in nature can use the hotel as a base for fishing, hiking, skiing and more, and Yellowstone National Park is just 90 minutes away. 

Canopy West Palm Beach

West Palm Beach, Fla.

The Canopy West Palm Beach has opened in Florida.
The Canopy West Palm Beach has opened in Florida.

Just two blocks from the Intracoastal Waterway, this 150-room Canopy by Hilton hotel debuted in May. Also just two blocks from the Palm Beach County Convention Center, the property features 7,000 square feet of meeting space that brings in plenty of Florida light with floor-to-ceiling windows.

The rooms are equipped with Canopy brand-exclusive beds that incorporate memory foam and Serta Cool Balance technology. Canopy bikes are free for guest use, and complimentary shuttle service is available throughout downtown. Water-filtration stations on each floor eliminate the plastic water bottles typically found in hotel rooms. Meals are served in Ban.ter, and craft cocktails can be found at the 13th-floor bar, called the Ban.ter Treehouse.

El Capitan Hotel

Merced, Calif.

Opening this fall, El Capitan, one of Hyatt’s Joie de Vivre Hotels, is a restoration of a former 19th-century hotel of the same name. Made up of both a historically preserved wing and a new extension, the property will feature 114 guest rooms and 3,000 square feet of meeting space. Many original parts of the building, such as the signage, are being preserved, and materials such as terracotta flooring, beadboard wall paneling and heritage-style lighting will be used throughout.

Two distinct restaurants will be on-site: The fine-dining menu at Rainbird will incorporate ingredients sourced from local purveyors, and Native Son, named for a climbing route in Yosemite National Park, will be a more casual 30-seat café and bar. Hyatt also will manage the restored Mainzer Theater, which dates back to the early 1920s. The building has a movie theater, performance and event spaces, and a retro gaming area with a sports-bar feel.

Hyatt Regency Frisco

Frisco, Texas

Now accepting guests is the Hyatt Regency Frisco in Texas.
Now accepting guests is the Hyatt Regency Frisco in Texas.

Half an hour due north of Dallas, this growing city welcomed the Hyatt Regency Frisco at Stonebriar Centre on June 1. The 303-room hotel is attached to the Stonebriar Centre mall, with access from the shopping mecca’s second floor.

Among the amenities will be two restaurants and a large lobby bar, as well as a 27,500-square-foot conference center that features the 12,330-square-foot Regency Ballroom and 3,900-square-foot Junior Ballroom. A 3,000-square-foot satellite location of the Frisco Public Library will offer great reads to hotel guests as well as city residents. Frisco is brimming with sports opportunities, as seven teams — including the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, soccer’s FC Dallas and baseball’s Double-A Frisco RoughRiders — are headquartered in town, and there are two stadiums and the National Soccer Hall of Fame.

Commodore Perry Estate

Austin, Texas

This 54-room boutique hotel, part of the Auberge Resorts Collection, will open in downtown Austin near the University of Texas in August. San Francisco designer Ken Fulk, the resort’s creative director, has spent two years hunting through design shops in Round Top, Texas, for antiques, sophisticated fabrics, vintage lamps and other unique touches. 

Built in 1928 as a home for Commodore Edgar Perry and his wife, Lutie — who enjoyed many Gatsby-like parties there — the hotel is on the National Register of Historic Places and features a walled compound with English-style gardens on nearly 10 acres.

For social gatherings, the Living Room will welcome guests with a new cocktail bar, and the Solarium, sporting its original tile floors, will have a menu of small bites and cocktails. The property’s garden-inspired restaurant, Lutie’s, will serve lunch, dinner and weekend brunch. The largest event space is the 1,600-square-foot chapel, which will seat 250 people theater-style.

The Broadmoor

Colorado Springs, Colo. 

The 784-room resort in the foothills of the Rockies, which reopens to guests on June 28, is adding a 150,000-square-foot exhibit hall to its already impressive 185,000 square feet of meeting space. The grand opening of the Broadmoor Exhibit Hall, originally slated to occur for the Space Symposium that had been scheduled for April, now will take place just prior to the symposium’s new dates, Oct. 31–Nov. 2.

The property features a host of accommodation options, from main-building guest rooms (111 of which are suites) to a five-bedroom estate house, cottage rooms and two three-story brownstones. About 3,000 feet above the main buildings sits the 11-cabin Cloud Camp retreat that offers hiking, mule rides, disc golf, yoga and more on the edge of Cheyenne Mountain and the Pike National Forest. The 13-cabin Emerald Valley Ranch, at 8,200 feet above sea level, has on-site chefs whipping up delicacies for after a fly-fishing, hiking or equestrian adventures.

Fairmont Century Plaza

Los Angeles

The $2.5 billion redevelopment project in Century City, Los Angeles, is now scheduled to debut Sept. 1. The 400-room midcentury-modern hotel — first opened in 1966 — is being lovingly restored, as is its nearly 24,000 square feet of meeting space, including the 13,078-square-foot Los Angeles Ballroom. Every room will provide a balcony allowing guests to enjoy the temperate climate and city views. The hotel itself is part of a walkable enclave set to include numerous outdoor retail and dining options.

Among the amenities at the reimagined hotel will be a 14,000-square-foot spa, round-the-clock fitness center and rooftop swimming pool. Food-and-beverage outlets will include the Lumiére Brasserie and Café Vignette, as well as rooftop and lobby bars. The facility will also have nearly 95,000 square feet of retail space.

Trump International Beach Resort Miami

Sunny Isles Beach, Fla.

This 360-room beachside property, reopening June 4, used the downtime to upgrade its guest-arrival experience. Led by interior designer Carolina Keimig, who oversaw the lobby’s original design nearly two decades ago, the project will draw inspiration from the hotel’s picturesque setting. 

A full menu of amenities are offered at the hotel, such as the full-service Aquanox Spa, and an oceanfront, grotto-style swimming pool surrounded by cabanas. Surfside dining takes place at Gili’s Beach Club, while breakfast also is served with an ocean view, at Neomi’s Grill. For groups, the property features 22,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space.

Ka’anapali Beach Hotel

Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii

A propertywide project should finish by December at the Ka’anapali Beach Hotel in Maui.
A propertywide project should finish by December at the Ka’anapali Beach Hotel in Maui.

Renovations had only just begun at the 432-room Maui hotel when the pandemic hit, but construction is continuing and the work should be finished by the end of the year. The $65 million project is touching the entire property, including a significant redesign of the 180-room Kaua’i Wing and the 84-room Lanai wing, plus the addition of a new beachfront restaurant called Huihui.

The property sits on 11 acres of tropical gardens and beachfront on the island’s northwest coast, and features a whale-shaped pool and an open-air bar. The Tiki Terrace and the Tiki Bar and Grill serve fresh Hawaiian fare; snacks and coffee are available at the Grab N Go café. Aside from gathering in the 6,250 square feet of indoor meeting space, groups can arrange all manner of water activities, plus helicopter tours and sunset dinner cruises.

Sheraton Phoenix Downtown

Phoenix, Ariz.

The 1,000-room Sheraton Phoenix Downtown is the first hotel to undergo the transformation that will take place across the Sheraton brand, and renovations are expected to be complete at the Arizona property when it reopens for business on Aug. 1. Getting new looks are the lobby, guest rooms and 111,961 square feet of event space. 
The lobby is getting more bold furnishings designed for comfort, along with built-in charging docks and work surfaces. There also will be a Sheraton Club Lounge for Club Level rooms, with special perks for Marriott Bonvoy members. The property’s reimagined restaurant will serve Spanish fare, and there will be a new grab-and-go eatery, as well. The revamped rooms will have Sheraton’s signature platform beds and new workspaces with standing desks.

Park Hyatt Aviara Golf Club & Spa

Carlsbad, Calif.

The 327-room Park Hyatt Aviara Resort is in the midst of a propertywide, $50 million renovation. Taking reservations for June 1 and beyond at press time, the hotel continues work on the project, which began in late 2019. Guest rooms, event spaces, dining venues, the lobby entrance, and the spa and fitness center all are getting face-lifts.
Already redone are the Grand Ballroom and the rest of the 78,000 square feet of meeting space. As with every aspect of the renovation, the new design is inspired by the property’s coastal location and panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. Outdoor event spaces have been refreshed with new landscaping, and a lawn for special gatherings has been introduced. The grand staircase overlooking the Palm Courtyard is set to debut in June; also being unveiled this summer is an enhanced pool area, with luxury cabanas at the adult pool and new water slides at the family pool. Dining-venue renovations and rebranding are expected to wrap up in August. The upgrades to the spa and fitness center now are scheduled to be completed in September.

Westin Cape Coral

Cape Coral, Fla.

Room renovations at the Westin Cape Coral will be completed a year early.
Room renovations at the Westin Cape Coral will be completed a year early.

A room renovation continues unabated at this property on Florida’s west coast. Originally scheduled to finish up in December 2021, the work will now wrap up a year earlier. The resort has also taken advantage of the quiet spring to move forward with a number of Marriott technology initiatives, including Mobile Key, which helps limit interactions between hotel employees and guests.

The $15 million renovation will increase the room inventory from 293 to 308, and the new design will take inspiration from the concept of “biophilia,” a belief that people have an innate need to connect with nature. The resort’s pool looks out to the Caloosahatchee River and the Gulf of Mexico, with poolside food and drink available from the Nauti Mermaid Dockside Bar & Grill. Marker 92 Waterfront Bar & Bistro also offers views of the river and the gulf. The property features 26,420 square feet of indoor meeting space and a host of outdoor event possibilities, as well.