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HOTEL WATCH: The Fairmont

HOTEL WATCH: The Fairmont


Does the Fairmont Millennium Park look a little glitzier than you remember? It should. In two weeks, it completes a $60M David Rockwell renovation started in 2008 to transform the interior from "heritage classic" to "contemporary." Over Easter break, it will quickly re-do its 62k SF of event space as well. Overall, more leather and suede, less brocade and twill; goodbye marble, hello limestone and onyx.


The 45-story, 687-room tower was built ground-up as a Fairmont in 1987, on the site of a former parking lot. It's got 65 suites, one of which was famously where Barack, Joe, and families watched the TV anchors announce their re-election last November. Which suite? Why, the Presidential Suite, of course.


Of course, it takes human beings to pull things off. Here's marketing manager Colleen Switzer, who started at the Fairmont in 1995, fresh out of college in Champaign, and hotel manager Ken Hall, a Montreal native with the organization for 20 years (who has also done stints in Toronto, Bermuda, Montreal, and Japan). We know they'll take care of you; we snapped this right after they helped welcome more than 450 to our big multifamily summit at the Fairmont last week.

What did you do for St. Paddy's? We spent the day hiding from leprechauns. Send ideas and suggestions to