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Who's News in Special Events for March 31, 2022

Special events business news

Venue News

The Woodlands Resort, Curio Collection by Hilton, an upscale, all-encompassing Texas escape, is taking down-time seriously with a new slate of experiential activations poised to put a smile on the faces of meeting and event attendees. Whether the intended purpose of the curated break is building team comradery or promoting health and wellness, the landmark destination – spanning an expanse of lush acreage in the heart of The Woodlands, a short drive from IAH airport and 30 miles north of downtown Houston – has something for nearly every taste. Groups focused on carving out time for health and wellness now have the option of goat yoga. Those looking to tap into some friendly group rivalry can join in on the pickleball craze.

In the post-pandemic world, mental health has never been more in the spotlight. While many individuals are returning to work and business travel, burnout remains at an all-time high stemming from the mental load of the past two years. At JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort in Marco Island, Florida, high value is placed on the overall wellbeing of each guest and this brand pillar is materialized through a wide variety of programs that foster a holistic approach to wellness.The resort has taken strides to combat this for their meeting and convention guests with the onset of a new initiative, the ‘Zen Den.’ This calming escape provides a respite for conference attendees and can be curated in any of the resort's unique meeting spaces during a group event. The spa-like environment features a floor-to-ceiling video wall which plays mesmerizing scenes from nature, dim lighting, individual chaise lounges, immersion headphones with calming music, as well as hot tea and water service. The designated quiet zone can be created for anywhere from five to one hundred guests to decompress at a time, ensuring a relaxing experience for all.  This innovative alternative to a traditional coffee break enhances the overall conference experience by ensuring attendees stay in an optimal frame of mind to both retain Information and contribute to discussion. Another initiative at JW Marriott Marco Island is their Mindful Meditation program, led by the resort’s team of yoga and meditation instructors. The 25-minute session is held daily at 7:30 AM on the resort’s Palms Lawn and is open to all resort guests. The intentional class is meant to help those in attendance begin their day with a moment of peace, reflection and an internal focus on their wellbeing.  

Rocco Forte Hotels is delighted to announce the re-opening of iconic Villa Igiea for the Season, showcasing the new Palazzina Donna Franca. After the hotel’s inaugural opening in June 2021 and a record-breaking opening season, Villa Igiea, the historical Art Nouveau palazzo overlooking the Gulf of Palermo opens its doors  once again to international guests and locals alike. Villa Igiea’s meticulous restoration is now entirely complete following the impressive renovation of Palazzina Donna Franca. Situated next to the main Villa, this elegant wing of the historical villa is the very location that once famously hosted the Florio family’s Cercle des Etrangers. The restoration brings back to life the original Salone Belmonte, reinstating this one-of-a-kind space as the perfect place for meetings and conferences, complete with sweeping views over the Tyrrhenian Sea. The two floors above the Salone boast 12 new rooms and suites. Among these suites is the jewel in the crown of Villa Igiea, the Donna Franca Suite: a stunning 144 sqmt space on the 1st floor offering the utmost sense of privacy without compromising on sumptuous, modern ambiance decorated with artifacts and local art. No detail is spared between the elegant living space, Super King-size bedroom, spacious marble bathroom, and a breathtaking, 96 sqmt private terrace overlooking the Gulf of Palermo.  

People on the Move

Jordan Nye has been named general manager of the Kimpton Schofield Hotel, bringing more than 15 years of hotel experience to the position. He joined the Kimpton Schofield in March 2021 as director of sales and marketing. Since joining the Kimpton Schofield, Nye has introduced a one-of-a-kind Van Gogh Suite and a rotating Concierge cocktail program, to name a couple. Nye joined Kimpton in 2016, most recently coming from the Kimpton Hotel Allegro in Chicago, where he was associate director of sales and marketing for the 483-room hotel. He previously worked for John Q. Hammons Hotels in Texas and Colorado.  

THesis Hotel Miami is pleased to announce the appointment of Marijana Simmons as its new director of sales and marketing. Simmons assumes the position immediately, leading the hotel’s sales and marketing team, devising strategic sales and marketing plans, and overseeing revenue management. Simmons joins THesis Hotel with more than 15 years of notable experience in hospitality sales, hotel management, and real estate. Most recently, she served as the director of sales and marketing for InterContinental Hotels Group at EVEN Hotel in New York City, where she led the group sales team in reaching aggressive goals, secured over 50 local and global accounts, and increased overall sales for the property. Prior to her role at EVEN Hotel, Simmons served as director of sales and marketing for InterContinental Hotels Group’s Hotel Indigo in Downtown Brooklyn, where she oversaw sales, managed and trained incoming staff members, exceeded budgeted sales, and developed new local business partnerships. Simmons also held roles at real estate firms the Bouklis Group and Douglas Elliman, where she coordinated residential rentals and sales throughout the New York City area. 

Products on the Market

There’s a lot of focus on “the way things used to be” and “getting back to pre-2019,” but neither conversation addresses the current state of events and experiences. Rather than reflecting on a world that was, or trying to predict what the future holds, GES, one of the world’s leading live event companies is taking a major step toward embracing change, identifying new growth opportunities, and, ultimately, redefining what it means to “come together.” GES, a leading global provider of exhibition services and live event venue services introduces its newest venture Spiro™, the brand experience agency for the NEW NOW™. Spiro strengthens GES’ abilities to manage traditional events and will offer a new set of capabilities that deliver heightened experience dividends for the ways events have now evolved.  

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