AC Hotels by Marriott Imports European Sophistication To North America – Boutique hotel brand celebrates U.S. debut in historic Cotton Exchange building in New Orleans

New Orleans – 11 December 2014 – Marriott International announced  the opening of the AC Hotel New Orleans Bourbon, celebrating the official entree of AC Hotels by Marriott into North America.  Originally founded in 1998 by renowned Spanish hotelier Antonio Catalan, AC Hotels is one of the most well-known hotel brands in Spain. Following its success in Europe, a joint venture was formed with Marriott International in 2011 establishing AC Hotels by Marriott as a lifestyle brand within the company’s global portfolio.

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Speaking at an event in New Orleans today, Arne Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, Inc. commented, “With the continued rise of the millennial traveler we saw an opportunity to import this highly successful European brand from overseas with the hope of introducing a more experiential and design led, upper moderate tier lifestyle brand to the U.S. We are proud to partner with NewcrestImage as we debut the first AC Hotel by Marriott here in vibrant city of New Orleans.”

Opened in November, the new AC Hotel New Orleans Bourbon rests on Carondelet Street on the cusp of the French Quarter in the city’s historic cotton exchange building. The iconic building is a National Historic Landmark which first opened in 1871 as a centralized forum for the trade of cotton. Gracious and chic, many of the 220 hotel rooms offer stunning views of the city.  The hotel will operate under a franchise agreement with NewcrestImage, a Texas-based hotel development, construction and management company.

A celebration taking place this evening at the hotel will feature music and entertainment by New Orleans own Jon Batiste, Rebirth Brass Band – part of the city’s vibrant musical culture since 1983 and Myles Hendrik, one of the most sought after DJ’s in the country. Dinner Lab, a membership based social dining experiment uniting undiscovered chefs with adventurous diners looking for something different from the conventional restaurant experience, and celebrated New Orleans Chef, Octavio Ycaza, will curate the menu.

“We’re honored to add an exciting new chapter to the proud history of this building as it becomes the country’s first AC Hotels by Marriott location,” said Mehul Patel, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NewcrestImage.  “Our company, in partnership with Marriott International, is all about making a difference for our guests and for the communities where we do business.”

AC Hotels by Marriott is the antidote to this modern age of multi-tasking and overstimulation with its purposeful European design, which edits away the superfluous in order to create moments of pause for travelers.

Each new AC Hotels location will feature signature amenities and culinary elements including the AC Lounge experience, the AC Library and the AC Kitchen.

The AC Lounge experience is inspired by the idea of “draft and craft,” a place within the hotel where guests can work during the day and relax after hours with a perfectly made cocktail and thoughtfully curated menu of small bites ordered right from the bartender. The AC Lounge will also offer wines on tap and craft beers unique to the area.  The AC Library provides a quiet space to linger and be inspired.

Open uniquely for breakfast, the AC Kitchen is grounded in the idea of a European home, welcoming guests with buttery croissants and breakfast delights including an artisan slicer allows for guests to experience a taste of Europe each morning with Iberico inspired artisanal Prosciutto Americain. The kitchen will also feature AC Hotels by Marriott signature Iced Coffee.

Along with New Orleans, AC Hotels by Marriott currently offers a portfolio of more than 75 hotels throughout Spain, Italy, Portugal and France. Growth plans for the brand include the opening of its next North American locations in Kansas City’s stylish Westport neighborhood and in the heart of Miami Beach early next year, as well as more than 50 additional hotels set to open within the next three years throughout the U.S. and Latin America.

AC Hotels by Marriott is a lifestyle brand within the Marriott International global portfolio of 18 brands. The company’s current luxury and lifestyle portfolio totals more than 450 hotels across seven brands, each offering its own unique personality and distinctive guest experience.  Accounting for nearly 25 percent of the company’s system-wide pipeline, Marriott expects to add more than 200 luxury and lifestyle hotel projects over the next several years, reflecting over $15 billion of investment by the company’s owners and franchisees.

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