Pine Bluff, Arkansas – The Plaza Hotel, part of the Pine Bluff Convention Center, has been sitting empty for more than 10 years, and Pine Bluff city leaders announced that a solution was finally found for this unused facility: Marriott Courtyard will officially take over the old Plaza Hotel.
With a whopping 32 distinct brands in its portfolio, Marriott is considered the world’s largest hotel chain. Marriott is well known for its portfolio of luxury properties, which includes iconic brands such as the Ritz Carlton and St. Regis. However, the company’s largest brand is Courtyard, with over 1,000 locations ranging from airport hotels to resort properties in tropical destinations. While many Courtyard locations in America are in desperate need of renovations and lack quality, a decent percentage of the Courtyard hotels in the United States are in extremely good shape and offer outstanding service at an affordable price.
Having in mind that Marriott Courtyard will completely renovate the old Plaza Hotel, we have a reason to believe that the latest Courtyard’s acquisition will be a great addition to the current Pine Bluff hospitality offer.
City leaders have been working for years to find a solution for the Plaza Hotel. The decision was finally announced earlier this week, and local residents were nothing but happy to hear that something nice is finally going to happen to the Plaza Hotel. What is even more important, having such a serious brand in the area will create new jobs and most certainly boost the local economy.
According to Pine Bluff Convention Center Executive Director Joseph McCorvey, the city has approached many different organizations and associations in recent years to find a proper solution for the Plaza Hotel. However, the city’s efforts didn’t deliver the desired results, which eventually resulted in the building’s disrepair. That’s why the city leaders, the director himself, and the local community are all happy that the Plaza Hotel will finally get renovated into what should be a 125-room Marriott Courtyard hotel when the works are finished in 2024.
The Plaza Hotel is connected to the event center, which includes an arena and auditorium with a combined capacity of over 9,000 people.This is why Marriott found the Plaza Hotel interesting and a potentially good business opportunity. The company believes that having the event center so close to the hotel will attract more visitors, something that McCorvey agrees to too.
“We have basketball to be played in the area, we have the ballpark, so for a lot of those family-oriented tournaments, we’ll be able to attract [families],” McCorvey said.
McCorvey added that the city has been working on the Plaza Hotel project for more than five years. Per the initial agreement, Marriott will demolish the current structure and a new structure that will bear the Marriott’s name will be built in its place. A developer group in the city known as “P3” will be talking with investment firms to finalize the details of how the project will be funded. The project is expected to cost $20-22 million. If everything goes as planned, Marriott will manage the hotel for 30 years, and construction is expected to start early next year.
“This is great for Pine Bluff [and] it’s great for the convention center because we have been without a hotel for several years,” McCorvey finished.
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