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January 27, 2015
Marriott Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire Delta Hotels and Resorts

BETHESDA, MDContinuing its rapid global expansion, Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) announced today it has signed definitive agreements to acquire the Delta Hotels and Resorts® brand and management and franchise business from Delta Hotels Limited Partnership, a subsidiary of British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (bcIMC) for C$168 million (approximately $135 million).

The Delta brand comprises a diverse range of hotels and resorts with 38 hotels and 10,000 rooms in more than 30 cities across Canada. Delta offers a fresh approach to the guest experience, including its new ModeRoom™ guest room designs, innovative use of new technologies, and new properties, such as its flagship Delta Toronto located at the hub of Canada’s hottest high-rise neighborhood, South Core. When completed, the transaction will increase Marriott’s distribution in Canada to more than 120 hotels and 27,000 rooms, making Marriott the largest full service hotel company in Canada. [Click here for images.]

Arne Sorenson, president and chief executive officer of Marriott International, said, “Delta has an impressive portfolio of hotels that are among the most preferred in Canada. With this acquisition, we are continuing our focus on building our brand portfolio and growing in attractive regions outside the U.S. Combining the strong Delta brand with Marriott’s hotel development expertise will accelerate growth of the brand in Canada and in other markets around the world.”

David Grissen, group president overseeing The Americas for Marriott International, said, “at completion, this transaction will propel Marriott to a leading position in Canada.  Canada represents the largest international source market for our hotels in the United States, and the integration of Delta into Marriott’s 4,100 plus hotel global portfolio will provide new travel opportunities for both Delta and Marriott customers. We expect integrating Delta into Marriott’s systems, sales engines,, and the more than 49 million member Marriott Rewards loyalty program will create meaningful operational synergies for owners and franchisees.

Marriott’s Americas management team looks forward to working closely with Delta’s hotel owners and franchisees, and welcoming Delta employees, who will have access to a larger range of opportunities in North America and globally once the transaction closes.”

Under terms of the agreement, Marriott is acquiring the Delta management and franchise business, as well as the Delta brand and related intellectual property. At stabilization, after realizing certain operating synergies, Marriott expects the purchase price to be approximately 10 times annualized earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA).

Click here to download infographic (English);  download infographic (French).

bcIMC-affiliated entities own 13 Delta hotels (and one under development) and will sign new 30-year management agreements with Marriott for these properties. Third parties own the other 25 Delta hotels; 15 are managed by Delta and 10 are franchised. In total, five managed hotels (approximately 1,100 rooms) are under development.

The transaction is subject to receipt of certain third party and governmental consents, including by the Canadian Competition Bureau. Assuming receipt of the necessary approvals, the parties expect to close the transaction in the second quarter of 2015.  Marriott does not expect the transaction will have a material impact on its 2015 results, excluding one-time transaction and integration costs.

Avington acted as exclusive financial advisor to bcIMC.

Note on forward-looking statements: This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of U.S. federal securities laws, including the parties’ plans for closing; the resulting impact on the size of Marriott’s operations in Canada; Marriott’s expectations for Delta’s stabilized EBITDA and EBITDA multiple and Marriott’s 2015 earnings impact; and similar statements concerning anticipated future events and expectations that are not historical facts. We caution you that these statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, including the ability of the parties to agree on definitive transaction documents, the receipt of necessary consents, and other risk factors that Marriott identifies in its most recent quarterly report on Form 10‑Q. Any of these factors could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations expressed or implied in this press release. We make these forward-looking statements as of the date of this press release. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

About Marriott International:
Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is a leading lodging company based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, with more than 4,100 properties in 79 countries and territories and reported revenues of nearly $13 billion in fiscal year 2013. The company operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts under 18 brands. For more information or reservations, please visit our web site at, and for the latest company news, visit

January 21, 2015
MPI Appoints Susan Prophet as Sales Leader in Canada

Meeting Professionals International (MPI) has announced today the selection of Susan Prophet as its new director of business development in Canada. She will be responsible for management of strategic partnerships and sales activity for the association and the MPI Foundation within the country.

“I am very excited to have Susan on our Global Business Development Team. She is a well-respected and proven leader across Canada and brings an extensive network of relationships and experiences to our organization. We view Canada as a premier market and look forward to growing our reach and relationships in the very near future under her leadership,” said Darren Temple, chief business development officer of MPI.

Reporting to Temple, Prophet will be based in Ontario. Her official start date was January 19, 2015. 

Prophet has more than 20 years of industry experience and is a longtime member of MPI. She has held various volunteer leadership roles with MPI, SITE Canada and the Canadian Society of Association Executives, including serving as past president of the MPI Toronto Chapter.

Her most recent position was with Tourism Quebec/Destination Quebec as director of meetings, convention & incentive travel. Prophet previously worked for Hull Tourism & Convention Bureau and Gray Rocks Resorts earlier in her career, and was presented the 2011 Hall of Fame Award for Industry Volunteer by Meetings & Incentive Travel magazine.

ABOUT MPI: Meeting Professionals International (MPI) is the largest and most vibrant global meeting and event industry association. The organization provides innovative and relevant education, networking opportunities and business exchanges, and acts as a prominent voice for the promotion and growth of the industry. MPI membership is comprised of approximately 18,500 members belonging to 70 chapters and clubs worldwide. For additional information or to join, visit

January 21, 2015
The International Centre Selects MAVERICK as its First Preferred Service Provider for Public Relations

Toronto, ON—The International Centre is pleased to announce its newest partnership, welcoming strategic communications and public relations firm MAVERICK to its list of Recommended Event Service Providers. With extensive media relations and event management expertise in the consumer, technology and corporate communications spaces, MAVERICK will work with International Centre clients to maximize the impact of their events.

"Public relations is a professional service that can increase the impact of an event exponentially," said Trevor Lui, Director of Operations & Sustainability. "Having MAVERICK on board as our first preferred vendor to provide these services ensure that we continue to offer the very best event management tools, and an unparalleled experience for our clients."

MAVERICK is an award winning Toronto-based boutique agency and named Canada's Small Agency of the Year in 2012 by the IABC. Having achieved major successes with clients such as Toronto Eaton Centre, Miele Appliances, Veet, Durex, American Standard and countless others, they have partnered with The International Centre to provide public relations services to clients, and to ensure that events have a positive business outcome.

"PR is more than damage control or publicity," said Julie Rusciolelli, Founder and President of MAVERICK. "We help our clients make a positive impact by engaging with the right people at the right time. MAVERICK is a collective of communicators that cultivates credibility, and produces results that resonate."

This partnership showcases The International Centre’s ongoing commitment to providing clients with the highest level of services and expertise possible to create exceptional experiences. The addition of MAVERICK to the Recommended Service Providers list further demonstrates its position as an integrated services facility and leading trade and consumer show venue.

Be sure to follow The International Centre on Twitter and Facebook… There’s Something Happening Here!

A full-service communications firm based in Toronto with reach across North America and globally, MAVERICK is where credibility is cultivated and where results that resonate originate. The agency represents clients from various industry sectors including consumer, technology, consumer packaged goods, corporate and public affairs, health and wellness, financial and professional services, government, and not-for-profit. Established 15 years ago, MAVERICK was named the IABC Canada Small Agency of the Year in 2012.
For more information visit

About The International Centre
The International Centre boasts over 40 years of success as the leading trade and consumer show venue in North America, and one of Canada's largest privately owned multi-purpose conference facilities. Located at 6900 Airport Road, offering complimentary parking for over 5,000 vehicles and surrounded by more than 10,000 hotel rooms, The International Centre is easily accessible from any point in the Greater Toronto Area.
For more information visit

Karen Wren
Marketing Manager
The International Centre

January 21, 2015
Twist by Roger Mooking Officially Unwrapped By HMSHost at Toronto Pearson International Airport

Toronto, ON—Today’s grand opening of Twist by Roger Mooking marked a major milestone in the ongoing upgrades to the dining program at Toronto Pearson International Airport. The new restaurant is brought to travellers by global restaurateur HMSHost, in partnership with celebrity chef, television host, and cookbook author Roger Mooking. Twist is located post-security in Terminal 1 by Gate D36 and it fits right in with Toronto Pearson’s and HMSHost’s dining vision to bring more local flavours into the airport. Roger Mooking is well-known for his exceptional talent in the culinary and entertainment realms, making this a perfect partnership to convey HMSHost’s Feeling Good on the Move® motto to guests. Officials from the airport, HMSHost, and Roger Mooking joined in today’s ribbon cutting celebration which included remarks and menu samplings for guests and travellers.

“Bringing Twist to Pearson is a dream come true for me. Being in the airport has allowed me to showcase some new and exciting menu items for travellers that will give them a taste of our city’s uniquely diverse culinary scene,” said Roger Mooking. “Working with HMSHost to bring this restaurant to life has been such a great experience and I sincerely hope our guests will love what we have created together.”

Twist incorporates a “global twist” on locally sourced North American comfort foods at Toronto Pearson. With menu items created by Roger such as the Splat Scones, made with Devonshire cream, lavender honey, and peameal bacon; and the Fried Chicken, made with Japanese spices and Thai-influenced crispy herbs with a lime honey dip for presentation and flavour, travellers will be delighted in the opportunity to experience Roger’s culinary flair. Roger focuses on increasing the healthy, gluten free, vegetarian, and sustainable options available to travellers at the airport, with dishes that pack a powerful punch of flavour, and Twist is full of such offerings.

“Toronto Pearson has been working with local celebrity chefs over the past few years to create a strong sense of place for our passengers. We are very pleased that Roger Mooking has joined forces with our partner HMSHost to bring to life an exciting culinary experience,” said Scott Collier, Vice President, Customer and Terminal Services, Greater Toronto Airports Authority. “Twist by Roger Mooking brings flavour in a big way. He blends fresh, locally sourced ingredients mixed with international flavours, offering a culinary adventure for people flying through Terminal 1."

In addition to working with HMSHost on Twist, Roger is consulting on several new dishes and influencing menu enhancements for many of HMSHost’s other restaurants at Toronto Pearson. Roger is also integrating local suppliers such as Donato Harvest, Kristapsons Salmon, Rowe Farms, Pingue Prosciutto, Sausage King, and Monte Forte Dairy into his menu creations.

Twist is a restaurant that travellers of all ages and demographics will love from the moment they step inside. Roger has created a menu unlike anything we’ve seen before, and not just for an airport. Travellers will love the use of exotic flavours and spices,” said Amy Dunne, Vice President of Business Development at HMSHost. “Roger has a dynamic personality and world-class culinary skills, a combination that has made it such a pleasure to work with him on Twist, and we look forward to continuing our partnership for years to come.”

Roger is host and co-creator of the internationally broadcast television series Everyday Exotic, and has published an award-winning cookbook based on the show. He is also co-host of Heat Seekers on Food Network and host of Man Fire Food on Cooking Channel. Roger has amassed multiple accolades such as The Maverick Chef Award and Premiers Award, as well as notable mentions on numerous “Best Of” lists. His extraordinary culinary talent has also secured him a spot as a recurring judge on Food Network Canada’s hit show Chopped Canada, and has led to appearances on The Today Show, Good Morning America, The Marilyn Denis Show, Top Chef Canada and Iron Chef, as well as food and wine shows globally.

About HMSHost
Global restaurateur HMSHost is a world leader in creating dining for travel venues. HMSHost operates in more than 100 airports around the globe, including the 20 busiest airports in North America. The Company has annual sales in excess of $2.7 billion and employs more than 30,000 sales associates worldwide. HMSHost is a part of Autogrill Group, the world’s leading provider of food & beverage services for people on the move. With sales of around €4 billion in 2013, the Group operates in 30 countries and employs some 56,000 people. It manages approximately 4,700 stores in over 1,000 locations worldwide. Visit for more information. We can also be found on Facebook at and on Twitter at @HMSHost.

January 20, 2015
Egencia celebrates record-breaking success

Bellevue, Wash. and Paris--Employees at Egencia®, the business travel company of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE), celebrated 2014 records by setting two, new GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® record-titles in January 2015. To promote a company culture steeped in innovation and fun, Egencia executives urged employees to set sights higher for the year ahead while commending their teams' milestones achieved in 2014.

At events in Europe and North America, the company highlighted 2014 successes including:
--Breaking the US$5 billion gross booking* mark;
--More than doubling technology development capabilities;
--Hitting near 90% online adoption rates of its proprietary online travel platform;
--Deploying a more connected travel experience through the expansion of Egencia® TripNavigator; and
--Growing its global presence to more than 60 countries – a six-fold increase since 2010.

In the spirit of continuing the momentum, Egencia employees gathered and set two new GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® record-titles during January. In Europe, they formed a human image of an airplane with 294 participants – the largest ever recorded; while the North American and APAC teams built the world's longest chain of paper airplanes comprised of 1,582 handmade planes.

Commenting on the records, Egencia President, Rob Greyber remarked, "Our successes in 2014 are a true testament to our global teams. Whether they are working together to set new world records or provide a superior experience to our travelers, Egencia success starts with our people. I appreciate all of their efforts during 2014 and challenge them to take us higher in the year ahead. With these new records, we're off to a great start."

About Egencia
Egencia is a leading full-service travel management company delivering innovative business travel technology and expert local service to more than 10,000 clients in 64 countries around the world.  As part of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE), one of the world's largest travel companies, Egencia provides forward-looking companies with the ability to drive compliance and cost savings in their travel programs, while meeting the needs and requirements of the modern business traveler. For more information please visit us at or connect with us on Twitter @Egencia.

January 20, 2015
Marriott Springhill Suites Old Montreal ranked among top 50 hotels worldwide for groups and announced the company’s 2014 top 50 group and meeting friendly hotels. These hotels were selected based on continuously exceeding the expectations of group planners by delivering excellent customer care, attractive group pricing and earning numerous positive post-stay reviews. Ranging from luxury properties to affordable lodging accommodations, each of these top-ranked hotels around the world is rewarded for their commitment towards delivering the best service and value for group bookings. This list includes hotels worldwide, from the JW Marriott Hong Kong to the Sofitel Bali and the Four Seasons Lisbon. Only 10 hotels from this exclusive list are located in Canada, and only one is from Montreal: the Marriott SpringHill Suites Old Montreal! “This recognition means a lot for our team’’, says Ilona Andrassy, General Manager ``We are extremely proud!”. For Yves Pouliot, Director of Sales & Marketing, “It proves that we do everything possible to go beyond the expectations of all of our group planners, no matter if the group is big or small. For us, every group planner is a VVIP!”

The Marriott SpringHill Suites Old Montreal is also currently under renovation! All of its 124 suites will be refreshed with new textures and trendy colors to create an intimate and functional “boutique hotel” vibe! The designers of the project, Camdi Design, have also worked on many other innovative hotels and restaurants in Montreal and in the province of Québec. “We want to marry the international high standards of the Marriott brand with the unique spirit of Old Montreal” says Serge Primeau, Vice-President of Operations and Development for Urgo Hotels Canada. The re-launch is expected mid-March.

All information can be found at :

January 19, 2015
Mike Evans Appointed Account Director, Travel Management for Starwood Hotels in Toronto

Toronto, ON—Mike Evans has been named Account Director, Travel Management Companies for the Starwood Hotels Toronto Metro Market Sales Team. In this new role, he will work closely with Travel Management Companies (TMCs) to develop new business, joint customer interactions and travel experiences for clients on behalf of the Sheraton Gateway Hotel in Toronto International Airport, The Westin Harbour Castle, Sheraton Centre Toronto and Sheraton Toronto Airport & Conference Centre.

Evans brings more than 10 years of corporate sales leadership to the position, most recently holding the position of Director of Sales and Marketing for the Sheraton Centre Toronto. Previously he spent four years as Business & Leisure Sales Leader for Starwood’s Toronto Metro Market of hotels. Previously he held the position of Director of Sales and Marketing for the Sheraton Gateway Hotel and Sheraton Hamilton Hotel.

Evans is a member of Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE) and Association of Canadian Travel Agencies (ACTA). He is a graduate from Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology in Hospitality Administration.

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with nearly 1,200 properties in 100 countries, and 181,400 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, resorts and residences with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, Aloft®, and Element®. The Company boasts one of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®), allowing members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., a premier provider of world-class vacation experiences through villa-style resorts and privileged access to Starwood brands. For more information, please visit

January 16, 2015
Marriott Rewards members get free Wi-Fi at Niagara Falls hotels

Niagara Falls, ON The long list of great amenities available to guests at the two luxurious Marriott hotels overlooking Niagara Falls continues to grow, as free Wi-Fi is now available to all Marriott Rewards members.

The 4-Diamond, 5-Star Marriott Fallsview Niagara Falls Hotel and Spa and the 4-star Marriott Gateway on the Falls will begin offering complimentary Wi-Fi service to Marriott Rewards members, beginning January 15, 2015.

“Our properties have the most bandwidth and the fastest Internet service of all large hotels in Niagara Falls, and now it’s free,” said Anthony Annunziatta, Vice-President of Marketing for the Marriott hotels. “This is another way that we can show our guests how much we appreciate their loyalty to Marriott and how pleased we are that they’ve chosen to stay with us.”

Membership in the Marriott Rewards program is free, allowing members to earn points toward free hotel stays, airline miles and much more every time they stay at any Marriott hotel worldwide.

Marriott Rewards members who book stays at the Marriott Fallsview Niagara Falls Hotel and Spa or the Marriott Gateway on the Falls through, or channels (including Marriott’s special offers email subscriber list) will receive complimentary Wi-Fi throughout their stay.

About Marriott Fallsview Niagara Falls Hotel & Spa:
The Marriott Fallsview Niagara Falls Hotel & Spa holds the enviable distinction of being the closest hotel to Niagara Falls. As the area's premiere AAA Four Diamond, five-star luxury hotel in Niagara Falls, the Marriott Fallsview Niagara Falls Hotel & Spa overlooks the majestic waterfalls and is located just minutes away from a variety of exciting attractions and casinos. For more information about the Marriott Fallsview Niagara Falls Hotel & Spa visit

About The Marriott Gateway on the Falls:
Located in the heart of the vibrant Niagara Falls Fallsview district, the Marriott Gateway on the Falls is the largest Marriott conference facility in Canada. The closest hotel to the Scotiabank Convention Centre, the Marriott Gateway features more than 40,000 square feet of meeting space with the latest in multi-media technology, a full-service business centre, 405 guest rooms — including lofts with 19-foot floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the majestic Niagara Falls — an open concept lounge, Fallsview dining and a concierge lounge. For more information about The Marriott Gateway on the Falls, please visit

January 16, 2015 & Announce the Top 50 Hotels Servicing Group Travelers

London, UK—Servicing the best in online group travel, and announces the company’s 2014 top 50 group and meeting friendly hotels. These prominent hotel partners were selected based on continuously exceeding the expectations of group clientele by delivering excellent customer care, attractive group pricing, and earning numerous positive post-stay reviews. Ranging from luxury properties to affordable lodging accommodations, each of these top-ranked hotels around the world are rewarded for their commitment towards delivering the best service and value for group bookings.

Tim Hentschel, CEO of HotelPlanner and, stated, “We are excited to honor the top hotels in the world who understand how to deliver outstanding value to group travelers. HotelPlanner and provide groups and event planners with a reliable resource to make informed and confident group booking decisions which make for a great stay and an overall memorable experience for any budget in any destination.”

The top 50 group-friendly hotels worldwide in the ranking include:

7stones Boracay Suites – Boracay Island, Philippines (3 Stars)
Best Western Phuket Ocean Resort – Phuket, Thailand (3 Stars)
Fiesta Resort Guam – Tumon, Guam (3 Stars)
Grand Nikko Bali – Nusa Dua, Indonesia (5 Stars)
Harbour Plaza North Point – Hong Kong, China (4 Stars)
Holiday Inn Beijing Focus Square – Beijing, China (3 Stars)
Holiday Inn Express Singapore Clarke Quay – Singapore (3 Stars)
Indigo Pearl – Phuket, Thailand (5 Stars)
JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong – Hong Kong, China (5 Stars)
Prince Marco Polo Hotel – Kowloon, China (4 Stars)
Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu – Cebu, Philippines (4 Stars)
Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua Beach Resort – Nusa Dua, Bali (5 Stars)

Best Western Plus Downtown Vancouver – Vancouver, BC, Canada (3 Stars)
Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls – Niagara Falls, ON, Canada (3 Stars)
Delta Barrington – Halifax, NS, Canada (4 Stars)
Doubletree by Hilton – Toronto, ON, Canada (3 Stars)
Hilton Garden Inn Toronto City Centre – Toronto, ON, Canada (3 Stars)
Hilton Quebec – Quebec, QC, Canada (4 Stars)
Marriott Springhill Suites Old Montreal – Montreal, QC, Canada (3 Stars)
Quality Hotel Burlington – Burlington, ON, Canada (3 Stars)
Radisson Hotel & Suites Fallsview – Niagara Falls, ON, Canada (3 Stars)
Residence Inn by Marriott Vancouver Downtown – Vancouver, BC, Canada (3 Stars)

Dreams Sugar Bay St. Thomas – St. Thomas, Virgin Islands (3 Stars)
The Fairmont Hamilton Princess – Hamilton, Bermuda (4 Stars)
The Fairmont Southampton Hotel – Southampton, Bermuda (4 Stars)
Hilton Rose Hall Resort & Spa All Inclusive – Montego Bay, Jamaica (4 Stars)
Hotel Frances Santo Domingo – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (4 Stars)
Majestic Elegance Punta Cana Luxury All Inclusive – Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (4 Stars)
Majestic Colonial Punta Cana All Inclusive – Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (4 Stars)

Aloft Cancun – Cancun, Mexico (4 Stars)
Bel Air Collection Resort & Spa Cabos – San Jose Del Cabo, Mexico (3 Stars)
Great Parnassus Resort & Spa All Inclusive – Cancun, Mexico (3 Stars)
Iberostar Cancun All Inclusive – Cancun, Mexico (3 Stars)
Presidente Intercontinental Mexico City – Mexico City, Mexico (4 Stars)
Sandos Finisterra Los Cabos all Inclusive Resort – Cabo San Lucas, Mexico (4 Stars)

South America:
Grand Hyatt Sao Paulo – Sao Paulo, Brazil (5 Stars)
Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon – Lisbon, Portugal (5 Stars)
Hilton Sao Paulo Morumbi – Sao Paulo, Brazil (5 Stars)
Holiday Inn Express Maceio Ponta Verde – Maceio, Brazil (3 Stars)
Hotel Cascais Miragem – Cascais, Portugal (5 Stars)
Sheraton Da Bahia Hotel Salvador – Salvador, Brazil (4 Stars)

Doubletree by Hilton London Hyde Park – London, UK (4 Stars)
First Hotel Excelsior – Copenhagen, Denmark (3 Stars)
Hotel Donauwalzer – Vienna, Austria (3 Stars)
Ibis Muenchen City – Munich, Germany (2 Stars)
Park Inn by Radisson Berlin Alexanderplatz – Berlin, Germany (4 Stars)
Radisson Blu Hotel Olumpia – Tallinn, Estonia (4 Stars)
The Poet Hotel Amsterdam Tryp by Wyndham – Amsterdam, Netherlands (2 Stars)
The Wesley – London, UK (4 Stars)
Tryp by Wyndham Sevilla Macarena Hotel – San Juan De Ribera, Seville, Spain (4 Stars)

About HotelPlanner & provides online services to the global group hotel market. The company’s service ensures the lowest rates by allowing customers to receive quotes online directly from hotel group sales managers. HotelPlanner allows customers to book hotels for business meetings, conferences, conventions, family reunions, weddings, extended stays, tours, military reunions, church events, and group travels. The company also provides mobile applications for booking group hotel reservations. The company owns and operates, a site that provides information and booking services for meeting and banquet venues around the world for corporate and association meeting planners. Founded in 2002, the company has offices in in West Palm Beach, FL (USA Headquarters), Las Vegas, Nevada, London, England, (European Headquarters) and Hong Kong. For more information, please contact Bruce Rosenberg at (818) 661-0244 or at Bruce.Rosenberg(at)hotelplanner(dot)com.

January 13, 2015
Canada's leading restaurant and events company to assume operation of historic event space in downtown Toronto

Toronto, ON—Canadian restaurant, catering and event company, Oliver & Bonacini (O&B) today announced the expansion of its events portfolio to include the iconic and grand scale Toronto venue, The Carlu.

Originally opened in 1930 as "Eaton's Seventh Floor," The Carlu was designed by French architect Jacques Carlu.  In 2003, the space at 444 Yonge St. in College Park was reopened as "The Carlu" event venue after an extensive restoration, led by Jeffry Roick and Mark Robert.  Now recognized as one of Toronto's best examples of Art Moderne architecture, The Carlu has been designated as a National Historic Site of Canada, and has played host to royalty on several occasions, as the preferred space for high profile social fetes, conventions, and corporate celebrations.

"The Carlu has long been considered the gem of Toronto's event scene, with a sterling reputation as one of Canada's premier event destinations.  With O&B's extensive portfolio of venues, and their consistency and excellence of cuisine and service, The Carlu was a natural fit.  We are confident that they can lead the venue to even greater heights," says Jeffry Roick, Managing Director, The Carlu.

In recent years, O&B's growth in the event sector has included the historic Arcadian event complex at Hudson's Bay Queen St., Toronto; Malaparte at the TIFF Bell Lightbox, Toronto; the Toronto Region Board of Trade; Windermere House, Muskoka; Westin Trillium House, Collingwood; and most recently, Trump Toronto.  O&B is also actively working on newly constructed event spaces in Calgary and Montreal that will be introduced over the next 18 months.  A key goal of the company is to develop an extensive "one-stop" portfolio of top-level event spaces to accommodate every client need, from social and wedding requirements, to full-service corporate conferences and events.

"We're very excited to be managing this magnificent venue and couldn't be happier to be bringing our passion for food and service to The Carlu's distinctive setting of elegance and grandeur," says Andrew Oliver, President of Oliver & Bonacini Restaurants. "We have great respect for what's been accomplished at The Carlu.  Working with The Carlu events team, we look forward to continuing the legacy of excellence that has been upheld throughout the years."

The official transition of The Carlu management to O&B will take place on March 2, 2015. All existing catering and venue contracts at the venue will remain in place and be honoured, with clients continuing to work directly with their Carlu event specialist to coordinate all logistics.  Effective immediately, clients will also have the opportunity to book O&B as their caterer for all future events.     

For more information please visit:
Website:     OliverBonacini 
Twitter:       @OliverBonacini         
Facebook:  OliverBonaciniRestaurants
Instagram:  @OliverBonacini   

About Oliver & Bonacini Restaurants, Events and Catering
Oliver & Bonacini (O&B) is recognized as one of Canada's leading fine dining restaurant, events and catering companies, operating 12 unique and innovative restaurants in Ontario. Operations include à la carte dining, quick service dining, catering and special events. Restaurants include America, Auberge du Pommier, Bannock, Biff's Bistro, Canoe, Canteen, Jump, Luma, and Oliver & Bonacini Café Grill (Toronto, North York, Blue Mountain, Oakville). Operations are supported by an in-house bakery and chocolate/confections shop, O&B Artisan. The company's private dining and events division, Oliver & Bonacini Events and Catering, manages a number of large-scale event facilities, including Arcadian, Toronto Region Board of Trade, Malaparte at TIFF Bell Lightbox, Windermere House on Lake Rosseau, Muskoka, and the Trump International Hotel & Tower Toronto (in collaboration with INK Entertainment). In 2011, Oliver & Bonacini partnered with Hudson's Bay Company (HBC), completing their first project in spring 2012 at Hudson's Bay Queen Street store, Toronto. They are currently in development with a second grand-scale project slated to open in late 2014 at Hudson's Bay Calgary Downtown. In 2013, O&B was named a preferred catering provider to the Royal Ontario Museum, Design Exchange, The Round House at Steam Whistle Brewing and all INK Entertainment event venues, in addition to launching its own direct-to-venue catering service, O&B Caters. Oliver & Bonacini credits its success to the development of a strong company culture, where excellence of food quality and service are valued above all else.

About The Carlu
The Carlu is an historic event space in Toronto. Known for many years as the "Eaton's Seventh Floor", The Carlu is one of Toronto's best examples of Art Moderne architecture.  In 1930, the Eaton's department store chain opened "Eaton's College Street", an imposing Art Deco store at the intersection of Yonge Street and College Street. The matriarch of the Eaton family, Lady Flora McCrea Eaton, retained the noted French architect Jacques Carlu to design the seventh floor of the edifice.  Between 1931–1965, the venue was home to the Eaton Operatic Society, and played host to major performers of the day, including Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, and Frank Sinatra.  In 2003, the seventh floor was reopened after an extensive restoration. The raked floors were removed from the auditorium to return the space's original movable seating. Other modifications had to be made to the auditorium so that modern acoustical equipment could be used. Even the original Lalique fountain, which had long been believed lost, was restored to its place at the centre of the Round Room.  The venue's new name was chosen to honour the architect that had originally designed the space.  Since its re-opening, The Carlu has hosted numerous high-profile events, including concerts, galas, weddings and fashion shows.