By TIM ROWDEN
“It was imperative that we kept it union,” Bill Nicely, Director of Sales for the newly renovated Holiday Inn St. Louis–Downtown Convention Center at 811 N. 9th Street said at a recent luncheon for union members at the 100 percent union remodeled and union staffed hotel.
The Downtown Convention Center is one of two union Holiday Inn hotels in the St. Louis area operated by HMA Hotels. The other is the Holiday Inn Express St. Louis Airport /Riverport, which has been a union facility since 2000.
“We’re probably the only company that's got two union hotels,” Nicely said. “We really appreciate your support and any help you can give. As you guys support your workers, we’d really appreciate you supporting out members of Local 74 of UNITE HERE. We’d really appreciate you uniting here!”
Operating Engineers Local 148 also represents workers at the hotel.
Kevin McNatt, president of Local 74, explained what union members already know – it costs more to do it union and do it right, but the payoff is in the quality of the service and the end product.
“Our folks earn $15 to $16 an hour,” McNatt said. “It’s not cheap to be a union property. That’s why we appreciate you supporting them and supporting our union. Every bit of renovation in this hotel was done union.”
MADE IT HAPPEN
Huck Oberlin, principal partner of HMA Hotels, which manages the downtown and airport Holiday Inns, said renovating the downtown hotel, which had been a Ramada Inn, cost about $9 million and required the facility to be closed for two months.
That’s a short turnaround on such a major project, Oberlin said. “The only way we could have gotten it done was with union labor,” he said.
The Holiday Inn St. Louis–Downtown Convention Center is an elegant looking facility, with spacious rooms, a new restaurant and bar The St. Louis Hall of Fame, new media and laptop lounge, laundry facilities, a fitness center, 24-hour market and large and flexible meeting space.
Located next to the America’s Center/Edward Jones Dome in downtown St. Louis, it is only 14 miles from Lambert International Airport, half a block from Washington Avenue shops and night life, access to Metro link rail, and a short walk from the Arch Grounds, casino gambling, Busch Stadium and the new MX Center, which features movie theaters, restaurants and a son to be open National Blues Museum.
The hotel includes over 10,000-square-feet of flexible meeting and banquet facilities, including a 7,000-foot ballroom that can accommodate 600 and separates into four rooms with two additional breakouts located across the 4,000-square-foot lobby. The Executive Board room has seating for up to 16. The Grand Ballrooms is elegant and is a great place and value for hosting wedding receptions.
The hotel also has motor coach parking for large groups and is AAA and FEMA approved.
The Holiday Inn Express Riverport is conveniently located near the intersection of I-70 and I-270 next to Dave & Buster's, Hollywood Casino, Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, and all of the businesses in the Maryland Heights/Earth City area.
The hotel offers a free shuttle to and from Lambert St. Louis International airport and anywhere else within a five-mile radius of the hotel.
The clean, comfortable, and modern rooms have been completely renovated using union labor. The staff is also union and will make you feel at home during your stay.
For more information, call 314-421-4000 or visit www.holidayinn.com/stlouisdwtn.