Category Archives: Hotels & Resorts

The Green Team

The many benefits of team-building exercises are well-known to most planners. They can break down hierarchies between bosses and subordinates, allow attendees to share ideas and network, and build trust between coworkers, which can lead to a greater sense of camaraderie (read “Come Together” in our September ’09 issue). Groups can also take away lessons…

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Smart Sites October 2009

The Gold Standard If green is the new black, then Courtyard by Marriott – Portland City Center is a fashion diva. Far from a typical Courtyard property, this hotel sets the standard for green, while standing out in one of the greenest cities in the country—Portland, Ore. Originally a bank building, the Marriott hotel opened…

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A literal kind of Internet travel

Aside from the color red, there’s nothing less green than flying across the country to do a site tour of a property. A few weeks ago, I had a phone call with Pat Flynn, executive director of hotel and sales at The Peppermill in Reno. He was just about ready to roll-out their eSite Inspection…

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Grand Del Mar Day 2

Day two of The Smart Meeting kicked off with a nature walk around the property of The Grand Del Mar. A handful of fearless planners and hoteliers rose at 6:45 a.m. for a unique view of the grounds, walking on a path around the golf course with views of the ocean. After this brisk jaunt,…

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Wine Country Wanderings

In preparation for our October issue I made a two-day trip to the Napa and Sonoma Wine Countries to check out hotels and meeting venues. Only about an hour away from our Sausalito, Calif. office, the Wine Country has many unique and wine-inspired options for meeting planners surrounded by California’s natural beauty. So as a…

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Smart Sites September 2009

Back in the Saddle Again It’s no small feat for a hotel’s design to actually enhance the environment and the cultural heritage of its location. But the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa in Chandler, Ariz. not only meets those expectations, it passes with flying colors (including the yellow, orange and red you see…

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The Cowboy Way

“In times like these, when values get all out of whack, when you forget what it was you were fightin’ for and why you worked all those dern long days in the first place, it’s time to mosey down to the Alisal Ranch and get a helping or two of cowboy ethics.” We can’t say…

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Acapulco: On It's Way Back Up

When people talk about Acapulco, it’s usually in reference to its glory days in the 1950s and ’60s, when Hollywood elites and the jet set wintered here in the many seaside hotels. A construction boom followed in the 1970s, crowding the beaches along the crescent-shaped bay, and the city’s star slowly faded. These days Acapulco…

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Family Feud

You may think your family has problems. When your clan is assembled, they can hardly make it through a peaceful meal because before you know it, the way your sister passed the potatoes becomes a catalyst for a full blown argument revealing how you don’t feel close anymore. At the Weston house, this would be…

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A SmartER newsletter

You may have already noticed that we recently redesigned the Smart Meetings e-newsletter in a pretty drastic way. Our crack team of designers, coders, editors, writers and creative minds weighed in on the look and functionality starting back in June as we were looking ahead to 2010. If I can have a little tech-geek moment—next…

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