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Mar. 12, 2013

Ascend, Wyndham Add Downtown New Orleans Hotels to Portfolio

By Eliza Theiss, Associate Editor

Ascend Hotel Collection, a network of historic, boutique and unique hotels and member of Choice Hotels International Inc. has announced the addition of four new hotel properties to its growing portfolio, now 77 properties strong. The new properties are Napa Winery Inn, Carmel Mission Inn and Arroyo Pinion Hotel, Ascend’s first properties in Napa Valley, Carmel and Sedona (respectively) and St. James Hotel, its second hotel in New Orleans.

“Our new members play a key role in the Choice Hotels strategy to expand in the upscale market,” said Michael Murphy, senior vice president of upscale brands at Choice Hotels in a press release.  In addition to its 77 hotels currently operational, the brand has signed agreements for 24 additional properties, which are set to go live within the network in two months’ time.

Located at 330 Magazine St., the 86-key St. James Hotel is located in the Banks Arcade, a 19th century landmark and former hub of the Caribbean coffee and sugar trade. As such, the property features a distinguished West Indies décor, including courtyards and rooftop terraces.

Just a few blocks from the original 1859-built St. James Hotel’s location, the current St. James opened in 1999 and was renovated in 2006. Amenities include landscaped courtyards in line with the West Indies décor, an outdoor lounging pool and Wi-Fi throughout the property. The luxurious boutique hotel is located in the downtown business district, just minutes from the French Quarter and all its attractions. It is also in close proximity to the Board of Trade special events venue and the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

In other news, Parsippany, N.J.-based Wyndham Hotel Group announced rebranding and taking over management services for eight U.S. hotel properties. The Wyndham Worldwide Corp. member entered into an agreement for the deal with FelCor Lodging Trust Inc., the owner of the properties.

The properties, which are set to undergo extensive renovations, total 2,523 rooms and include the Wyndham New Orleans French Quarter, located at 124 Royal St., in the heart of the historic French Quarter.

The 374-key hotel features amenities such as a fitness center, an indoor heated pool, a lounge, on-site parking and the on-site Checkered Parrot restaurant, with its upscale sports bar design and island cuisine.

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Photo courtesy of Saint James Hotel’s Facebook page

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