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Detroit Marriott finishes $30M renovation

Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center completed a massive, one-year renovation project that has handsomely transformed 1,298 guest rooms and 100,000 square feet of meeting space with an investment of $30 million.

One of the tallest hotels in the western hemisphere, the Detroit Marriot’s mammoth makeover began in January 2014 with guest room renovations that were completed in November 2014. Remodeling of meeting room space, two-level concierge lounge, and its 52 suites began in May 2014 and concluded in December 2014.

“The Detroit Marriott is one of city’s crown jewels, and with this $30 million investment, it now it shines like one too!” said Shonda Johnson, area general manager, Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center. “We are so very proud to unveil our modernized, beautiful new look and look forward to welcoming the community as well as visitors from around the world to our Michigan landmark property.”

The 70-floor hotel remained open throughout the project; only a few floors of guest rooms underwent reconstruction at a time, and meeting space remodeling was done in phases to enable group functions to continue without disruption.


Given Marriott’s commitment to Detroit, the corporate design team created a one-of-a-kind look specifically for the guest rooms of the Detroit Marriott. The designers immersed themselves in the fabric of the region and Detroit to incorporate the city’s vibe and personality into the new, comfortably modern décor theme. The color palate is neutrals and grays with teal accents, providing the perfect backdrop to stunning photography of Detroit architectural landmarks that adorn the walls.

As part of the guest room renovation, the hotel’s 52 deluxe suites on floors 62 – 70 have all been beautifully redesigned to further enhance their flexibility. Many suites now have dedicated space for hosting small events, conducting executive board meetings or casually entertaining guests.  The Presidential Suite on the 70th floor features a stunning new contemporary design with hard wood floors, a separate living room and dining area, three bathrooms and, of course, the best views in the city!

The meeting space at the Detroit Marriot spans three floors with 34 separate rooms and the renovations enhanced functionality as well as aesthetics. Similar to the décor of the new guest rooms, the hotel’s meeting areas have a contemporary, relaxed feel. The design team took inspiration from the Detroit River and the round, concrete and glass architectural features of the Renaissance Center. Grey, taupe, watery blue, moss green and touches of gold combine for a soft yet striking new color palate. Textured wall vinyl on large pillars resemble ripples of cool water while polished wood paneling adds warmth to the space.

Perhaps most importantly, the public areas outside the meeting rooms were totally rethought to allow for the addition of pre-function space for small group gatherings. All-new flexible seating areas and workspaces have organically shaped and ultra-contemporary furnishings. An overhead canopy helps to define separate areas of congregation and lighted wall panels feature a stylized skyline of Detroit and the Ambassador Bridge. Another decorative focal point of the new pre-function space is an enormous glass light fixture outside the Ambassador Ballroom that is a stunning work of art in itself resembling droplets of water suspended from the ceiling.

Detroit Marriott also completely refurbished its two-level concierge lounge located on the 56th & 57th floors. Available to elite members of Marriott Rewards and visitors staying in concierge guest rooms, the concierge lounge offers a place to socialize and enjoy refreshments. The space has been totally refreshed with chic design elements like those of a modern automobile showroom — sleek furnishings, shiny edges, contemporary seating, polished surfaces, burled walnut and silver mesh. Artwork featuring actual car parts adorns the space that offers a breathtaking view of the city. Additionally, the bi-level space was reconfigured for better traffic flow and lighting.

Hotel visitors might also notice the new look of the Starbucks cafe, which resides in the same location on level one of the hotel. This favorite spot for a cup of java and a scone now features a cool, slick décor, compliments of the Detroit Marriott


As part of the overall brand transformation, Detroit Marriott guests will enjoy new technological innovations and amenities, including free Internet access for Marriott Rewards members who book directly on Marriott.com, luxurious 12” King mattresses, plus updated bedding and linens.

High-tech innovations include the installation of touchscreen electronic reader boards located in the main lobby, by Starbucks, in the first floor Motor Lobby, and also near the meeting room space on all three levels. These tall, interactive touchscreen monitors provide details about events in the hotel, as well as conveniences and attractions in the Renaissance Center and Detroit. They are also equipped with way-finding capability within the Renaissance Center complex. Digital meeting signs are also now available and can be customized for in-house groups.

For music lovers, the Presidential, Governor’s and Chairman’s Suites are equipped with Bluetooth technology to sync with a guest’s mobile device and deliver music through speakers mounted in the bed.

Additionally, in recognition of an increasing number of guests who need to stay “charged” at all times, the Detroit Marriott is one of 29 Marriott Hotels in a pilot program to provide Kube Systems’ portable charging stations in Greatroom lobbies. Mobile guests can now more conveniently charge their power-hungry iPhones, Android devices, iPads and more, using Kube Systems’ Qi technology – the global standard in wireless charging. The concept was sparked by real travelers’ submissions on TravelBrilliantly.com, Marriott Hotels’ co-creation platform to engage guests and solicit user-generated ideas.

Detroit Marriott’s massive makeover is part of Marriott Hotels’ current brand transformation to reflect the lifestyle of the next generation of travelers who seamlessly blend work and play in a mobile and global world. The iconic brand is reasserting its position as an industry innovator through a multi-year global marketing campaign call “Travel Brilliantly” to amplify its dedication to leading the future of travel.

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