Downtown Fresno Hotel Brought Back to Life

April 3, 2008 8:51:16 PM PDT
Fresno misses out on many conventions and the tourist dollars they bring because of a lack of hotel rooms downtown.Convention Bureau Officials believe a newly refurbished Holiday Inn can help Fresno draw bigger events.

Fresno's set to welcome back the old Hilton Hotel which now flies the Holiday Inn banner. Five years after closing not much has changed outside but inside the grand ballroom has taken on a dramatic new look. Same place but much different feel. Design group president Jim Spitzig says, "Everything that we use is much more updated. A little more hip if you want to say. Contemporary, Fresno needs it downtown, heheheh."

The city also needs the 200 hotel rooms the 7-million dollar remodel will provide. Each room will have a 32-inch flat screen TV. But the most impressive view is the one from the ninth floor. The once-popular sky room returns and features a good look at downtown's changing skyline.

The night spot also sports ceiling speakers. Spitzig says, "To deaden the noise we brought all double-pane windows in"

The added window space now gives you a panoramic view of the city. But this won't be the only spot where people can gather. Spitzig says, "On the first floor will be basically a sports bar. Sports memorabilia and that'll be a happening bar right off the lobby."

This temporary banner will be replaced when Holiday Inn reveals its new logo in June. Green accent lighting around the hotel will make it stand out at night.

Project Manager Michael Goldstein says, "I'm gonna say a traditional and contemporary blend. It's not trendy but it will have the feel of the old Hilton but it's the new Holiday Inn."

Crews are laying down carpet and hope to lay out the welcome mat May 15th Holiday Inn's 200 rooms add to the 350 now available at the Radisson and La Quinta hotels downtown.


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