Margaritaville Holdings Breaks Ground on Flagship 123-Room COMPASS by Margaritaville Hotels & Resorts Slated for 2020

USA, Orlando, Florida. April 18, 2019

Margaritaville Holdings celebrated the groundbreaking of its first COMPASS by Margaritaville Hotels & Resorts property, sharing details on the next two hotels to open under its new select-service boutique hotel brand. With a prime location on Anna Maria Sound in Bradenton, Florida, the first COMPASS will open early next year. The brand's two newest signings will bring COMPASS to the picturesque waterfront town of Beaufort, North Carolina and the lively southern hub of Louisville, Kentucky.

"We're charting new coordinates with the groundbreaking of our first COMPASS and look forward to welcoming travelers to some incredible destinations," said Rick Cunningham, Margaritaville's senior vice president of hotel development. "This new brand is a wonderful enhancement to our already diverse hospitality portfolio, offering a new way for people to immerse themselves in the Margaritaville lifestyle."

First COMPASS Hotel Celebrated Groundbreaking on Anna Maria Sound, Florida on Friday, March 15

Situated within a 220-acre private island community on Anna Maria Sound in Bradenton, Florida, the first COMPASS hotel held a festive groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, March 15, with representatives from Margaritaville Holdings, Floridays Development Company and the local tourism industry. Attendees of the groundbreaking celebration enjoyed a steel drum band and stilt walkers, along with a program of remarks featuring John Cohlan, chief executive officer of Margaritaville Holdings; Tamara Baldanza-Dekker, chief marketing officer at Margaritaville Holdings; and Angus Rogers, principal and founder of Floridays Development Company.

Slated to open in early 2020, the 123-room hotel will be located adjacent to One Particular Harbour on the community's recently opened deep-water marina and feature a six-story building and resort pool with room to expand in the future. All rooms will offer a modern, nature-inspired design and premium amenities, including Margaritaville's signature bedding, an oversized bathroom with rainfall showers, and smart TVs. Guests will also enjoy complimentary amenities including a high-quality American breakfast buffet, light snacks and drinks at a welcome cabana, a daily signature cocktail happy hour, access to laptops, printing services and high-speed Wi-Fi. In addition, an outdoor pool area will be located between the hotel and a free-standing Floridays Restaurant & Grill, which will feature poolside bar service.

COMPASS Brand Coming to Louisville, Kentucky and Beaufort, North Carolina

Margaritaville Holdings has signed its next two COMPASS properties, both beginning construction later this year. Slated to open in Q4 2020, the next COMPASS to open is a 110-room hotel located on a marina in downtown historic Beaufort, North Carolina. The hotel will feature an outdoor deck, 5 o'Clock Somewhere Bar & Grill and other Margaritaville-inspired amenities and services. The location is being developed in partnership with Joseph Thomas, John Van Coutren and Bruce Sauter.

Also in the pipeline is a COMPASS hotel in Louisville, Kentucky, under development in partnership with Bachelor Fourth St., LLC. An ideal escape one-half block from the entrance to 4th Street Live!, the city's premier dining and entertainment destination, the 150-room hotel is also two blocks from the Kentucky International Convention Center. Slated to open in Q3 2021, the hotel will feature a 5 o'Clock Somewhere Bar and Margaritaville Restaurant.

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Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.