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Omni's Recent Developments and More News in the South

Omni Charlottesville Hotel Atrium


Following a $16 million design transformation after being acquired by global luxury hospitality company AKA in 2021, the 36-story Hotel AKA Brickell is now open at the Brickell Arch in Miami’s Brickell neighborhood.

Hotel AKA Brickell
Hotel AKA Brickell

Prior to renovations, guests arriving at the 201-room hotel had to first travel to the 25th floor before entering the lobby. Now upon arrival, guests enter a serene outdoor greeting area to wait for a car service which transports them to the newly designed ground-floor lobby lined with light-oak wood-paneled walls and satin bronze mirrors. 

The 25th floor now serves as Hotel AKA Brickell’s lounge with expansive windows wrapping around the room and showcasing views of the Miami skyline. The redesign also brought the new ADRIFT Mare, a restaurant and bar helmed by Michelin-starred chef David Myers and set in an 11-story atrium overlooking Biscayne Bay.

Hotel AKA Brickell features nearly 20,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space, including a 3,800-square-foot ballroom and 12,800-square-foot event lawn for groups up to 400.

[Related: Past Meets Present at These Upgraded Southern Hotel Properties]

North Carolina

Omni Raleigh Hotel Rendering
Omni Raleigh Hotel Rendering

The Raleigh City Council officially voted for the City of Raleigh staff to begin negotiating with Omni Hotels & Resorts to develop the highly anticipated convention hotel in the heart of downtown Raleigh, North Carolina.

Wake County’s Destination Strategic Plan 2028 recommended a full-service convention hotel with a minimum of 500 rooms in an effort to increase tourism and promote economic development in downtown Raleigh.

The Omni Raleigh Hotel will be the third Omni property in North Carolina and the first in Raleigh, set to bring 550 guest rooms and 55,000 square feet of meeting space to allow for larger events to take place downtown and meeting the county’s strategic plan recommendations. The hotel will also support the growth of the Raleigh Convention Center expansion, a $355 million project.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for the City of Raleigh and Wake County. We’ve been envisioning a new convention center hotel downtown for years. We are now one step closer to making it happen,” said Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin in a press release. “This opens up endless possibilities for more conferences, more conventions and more events at the Raleigh Convention Center.”

The Omni Raleigh Hotel is expected to open in 2027 and will be built on a lot measuring over one acre at the end of Fayetteville Street, across from the Raleigh Convention Center and Martin Marietta Center for the Performing Arts. 

[Related: Omni Announces Raleigh Debut as New Convention Center Hotel]

The Westin Beach Resort & Spa Sugarfin Terrace
The Westin Beach Resort & Spa Sugarfin Terrace

U.S. Virgin Islands

Sitting atop an elevated peninsula along the edge of Morningstar Beach in St. Thomas is The Westin Beach Resort & Spa at Frenchman’s Reef, which opened its doors and welcomed its first guests in mid-September. The latest resort to join Marriott Bonvoy’s Westin Hotels & Resorts portfolio marks the completion of an extensive $425 million rebuild project at Frenchman’s Reef.

The Westin Beach Resort & Spa at Frenchman’s Reef features 392 guest rooms including 28 suites, and most rooms overlook the sparkling Caribbean waves.

Five diverse dining options are onsite, including Luna Mar, an island-inspired restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine and offering a full-service bar and outdoor seating, and Sugarfin, featuring an indoor bar, outdoor terrace and sunset views over Charlotte Amalie, capital of the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The Westin Beach Resort & Spa at Frenchman’s Reef offers 72,000 square feet of meetings and events space across 20 event rooms and 43 breakout rooms. The Habor View Ballroom measures 9,930 square feet and can accommodate up to 625 guests banquet-style or 790 for a reception.

[Related: Texas' Latest Hotel Developments and More News in the South]


Omni Charlottesville Hotel King Guest Room
Omni Charlottesville Hotel King Guest Room

The Omni Charlottesville Hotel completed a $15 million renovation of its guest rooms, public spaces, dining venues and meeting space in October. The hotel’s redesign combines historic traditions with modern enhancements, taking inspiration from Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and the rich culture of Charlottesville. 

The hotel’s 199 guest rooms and six suites were updated with elegant wallcoverings, custom headboards and new decor, and guests can now enjoy luxurious walk-in showers and white marble vanities in their rooms’ refreshed bathrooms. 

Omni Charlottesville Hotel also debuted a new restaurant and bar concept, The Conservatory, specializing in innovative cocktails and shareable plates inspired by local cuisine. 

Omni Charlottesville Hotel’s meetings and events spaces have been renovated to include three new flexible meeting rooms, including a private dining venue, bringing the hotel’s total amount of function space to 14,000 square feet. The property has reception space for nearly 600 guests. 

Read this next: Noteworthy New Hotels and Renovations in the Caribbean and Cancun (2023)

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About the author
Taylor Smith | Content Developer, Destinations and Features

Taylor Smith joined Stamats in May 2022 as a content developer, destinations and features for Meetings Today. Smith has experience covering everything from travel to breaking news and graduated from Ball State University with a bachelor’s degree in news and magazine journalism. Previously, she’s written for St. Louis Magazine and worked as an editorial assistant and apprentice for Aubree Nichols, who has been published in premier publications such as The New York TimesELLE and The Los Angeles Times.