Portland Downtown Marriott Hotel Opens (Officially) on the East End; Mayor Duson Cuts The Ribbon

By Carol McCracken  (Post # 313)


Ara Aftandilian, an investor, Greg A. Mitchell, Director of Ec. Development, and Mayor Jill Duson visiting at yesterday's reception

Mayor Jill Duson welcomed the Residence Inn by Marriott to the east end of Portland in an opening celebration yesterday afternoon.  In her welcoming remarks, the Mayor said:  “This opening is a significant achievement, not just for the Marriott but for the city as a whole as it brings us one step closer to realizing our vision for a revitalized and reimagined Eastern Waterfront.  This Inn will serve as a cornerstone for the development of the Eastern Waterfront, as it provides the area with future retail space and creates more pedestrian traffic on the East side of Franklin Arterial.”

“In these economic times, tonight’s opening is a good news story,” she said.

According to one Marriott official, the concept for a residence inn came about in 1983 and the concept has been growing ever since.  The Portland Marriott is the 602nd to be built and the first one to be built in Portland.  Shortly thereafter Mayor Duson cut the ribbon.  That tradition was followed by another tradition in which Marriott officials dropped the front door key into a bucket never to be used again; that symbolizes that the front door of the Marriott is always open – 24/7.

Around 200 attended the function which included community members, business leaders, city leaders as well as 8 members of the hotel’s management from Kansas, where the corporate headquarters are located.  This hotel is located at 145 Fore Street.

Management said they’ve been extremely pleased with the occupancy rate since July when it opened:  when asked why so successful so soon, Dick Merkan, an executive vice president said: 
“Because of the name Marriott on the buiding!”

That says it all.