Rebirth of Iconic Atlanta Hotel Combines Storied Past with Southern Sophistication
All eyes will be set on Atlanta this June as The Whitley, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Atlanta Buckhead, owned by Host Hotels & Resorts, officially unveils its multi-million-dollar transformation to reclaim the hotel’s standing amongst the most luxurious hotels in the country. The Whitley’s renovation includes a redesign of all 507 rooms (including 56 spacious suites) and a remodeled reception and lobby area that reflects a traditional Southern front porch. In addition, a 5,000-square-foot Legacy Ballroom has been recently added with space for 300 guests, Trade Root Restaurant and Lounge has been renovated and its menu updated to include more Southern-inspired dishes and handcrafted cocktails, and The Spa is being restored to enhance the guest experience with the addition of a Himalayan salt room and expanded dressing areas.
Located in Atlanta’s coveted Buckhead neighborhood, a hub for world-class shopping, art galleries, and live performances, The Whitley began renovations in Fall 2018 which will debut in June 2019. Formerly The Ritz-Carlton, Buckhead, the hotel reopened its doors in late 2017 as The Whitley, paying homage to Buckhead’s legendary founder and trailblazer, John Whitley, a farmer, hunter, and tradesman who migrated to the area in the 1800s seeking a place for gathering, conducting business, and sharing ideas. Whitley settled on the side of the Chattahoochee River where he mounted the area’s namesake “buck’s head.”
“The Whitley’s stunning transformation reinforces The Luxury Collection’s commitment to restoring iconic hotels in the U.S. and across the globe,” said Anthony Ingham, Global Brand Leader, The Luxury Collection. “We are thrilled to deliver enhanced accommodations and public spaces while still allowing guests to experience the authenticity of one of Atlanta’s most storied cities.”
“The Whitley will set a new benchmark for luxury in chic Southern style,” said Michael Miner , Senior Vice President of Operations, HEI Hotels & Resorts . “The hotel offers a contemporary respite for world travelers and locals alike while paying homage to the area, steeped in rich heritage and Atlanta’s authentic charm.”
The Whitley Lobby Greets Guests with Southern Hospitality
Visitors seeking a break from the buzzing energy of Buckhead will be greeted like neighbors when they step inside The Whitley. The expanded lobby includes millwork panels and a blue ceiling above the registration desks modeled after a Southern home in addition to areas for reading, learning, relaxing or mingling. These designated areas include: the Hearth Lounge, where guests can share the day’s news with a drink by the fire; the Front Porch Lounge, symbolic of quintessential Southern hospitality and sense of community; the Explorers Library, filled with unique artifacts and literature detailing the local history; and the Sanctuary Lounge, a cozy, chic sitting area with a life-size buck sculpture by local artist Kevin Chambers.
The Whitley’s Design Concept Captures Nature with Indigenous Flair
In re-envisioning the new Whitley, the Boston-based interior design firm, Parker-Torres Design, Inc., sought to capture the “wild” land of Buckhead prior to becoming the metropolis it is today. The firm used refined furnishings accented by organic touches as a nod to the farming heritage of the land, and cool muted Earth tones of taupe, soft greens, and grey balanced by black. In addition, thoughtful metal and craft-artisan details are reminiscent of Whitley’s blacksmithing forge. The design also incorporates art and custom wall coverings, as well as glass and metal antique chandeliers from Currey & Company and custom sconces by Alger Triton.
With the transformation underway for all guest rooms and suites, which range in size from 720 to 1,800 square feet, every room will offer guests the opulent comforts of a luxurious living area and marble bathroom. Visitors can enjoy sweeping city views from the hotel’s spacious rooms, elegantly appointed with rich mahogany hardwood floors, Italian marble vanities, luxury Frette linens, Byredo bath products, refreshment centers, honor bars and The Luxury Collection feather beds with 400-thread-count linens. Club-level rooms and suites have access to The Whitley Club Lounge where guests can enjoy chef-created breakfasts, hors d’oeuvres, desserts, cocktails, wine and beer.
Guestrooms include a modern porch-like theme with woven raffia headboards, contemporized dogwood emblems, blue ceilings, and flora and fauna accents. As the local Buckhead neighborhood is an interconnected network of parks, trails, and green spaces, nature is reflected in the playfully curated bird artwork on the guestroom walls. The rooms also feature sketches of local notable figureheads that were brought to life and curated by Parker-Torres Design, with the assistance of SoHo Myriad Art Consulting.
The guestroom corridor features discreet buck racks in the lighting scones as an homage to the area’s namesake. The carpet’s “filtered light” design represents sunlight peeking through Georgia pines.
Meeting Spaces Abound at The Whitley on Peachtree Road
The Whitley maintains Buckhead’s historic purpose as a meeting space, serving as the premier location for business, leisure, meetings and events. Boasting 40,000 square feet of customizable event space with 31 versatile set-ups, The Whitley presents the perfect backdrop for intimate corporate retreats or large group meetings as well as memorable weddings, galas and lively social gatherings. Chief among the enhancements is the recent addition of a 5,000 square-foot Legacy Ballroom with space for 300 guests, featuring 14-foot ceilings, crystal chandeliers, floor-to-ceiling windows and a private al fresco terrace.
R&R—The Whitley Way
Guests can melt away distractions in the tranquility of The Spa, an award-winning holistic haven, featuring a selection of treatments ranging from massages and facials to body scrubs and salon services. Following the renovation, The Spa will also include one of the only Himalayan salt rooms in an Atlanta hotel, a 75-square-foot space custom-designed by Salt Chamber. The Spa amenities also include a state-of-the-art fitness center, junior-Olympic sized indoor pool and whirlpool, relaxation lounge, nail salon, couple’s suite, sauna, and luxurious product lines like Eminence Organics Skin Care, Farmhouse Fresh, Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare and Kneipp.
Southern Flavors at Trade Root Restaurant and Lounge
Visitors seeking a taste of Southern cuisine can try Trade Root Restaurant and Lounge, led by Executive Chef Marc Suennemann. Trade Root embraces local tastes and sources regional ingredients, celebrating Southern-inspired cuisine with seasonal dishes and handcrafted cocktails. Diners can enjoy Crab Cake Benedict, Fried Chicken & Waffles, Trade Root Farm Egg Frittata, and Lemon Poached Georgia Trout, to name a few. Guests can also indulge in 24-hour room service or head down to the lobby in the evening to enjoy a pecan bourbon tasting for an authentic Southern stay.
The hotel joins a growing portfolio of more than 100 Luxury Collection hotels and resorts worldwide under The Luxury Brand Portfolio of Marriott International. For more information, please visit www.marriott.com/thewhitley or call 404-237-2700.
About The Whitley
Newly rebranded and situated in the heart of Atlanta’s urban chic Buckhead neighborhood, The Whitley pays tribute to historic trailblazer and Buckhead founder, John Whitley, introducing a luxurious space for gathering and idea sharing to the thriving, metropolitan hub. The Whitley intertwines timeless and chic to captivate guests with authentic Southern hospitality, cosmopolitan style and luxurious experiences, with some of the world’s best shopping and nightlife just minutes away. The luxury hotel’s 507 rooms, including 56 spacious suites, feature sweeping views of the Atlanta skyline and thoughtful appointments, capturing the essence of Buckhead sophistication and the hotel’s characteristic charm. Maintaining Buckhead’s historic purpose as a meeting space, The Whitley is also a superlative setting for gatherings of all kinds, with 31 diverse event spaces covering 40,000 sq. ft., including the 5,000 square foot Legacy Ballroom with outdoor patio. Visit http://thewhitleyhotel.com.
About The Luxury Collection® Hotels & Resorts
The Luxury Collection®, part of Marriott International, Inc., is comprised of world-renowned hotels and resorts offering unique, authentic experiences that evoke lasting, treasured memories. For the global explorer, The Luxury Collection offers a gateway to the world's most exciting and desirable destinations. Each hotel and resort is a unique and cherished expression of its location; a portal to the destination's indigenous charms and treasures. Originated in 1906 under the CIGA® brand as a collection of Europe's most celebrated and iconic properties, today The Luxury Collection brand is a glittering ensemble, recently surpassing 100 of the world's finest hotels and resorts in more than 30 countries and territories. All of these hotels, many of them centuries old, are internationally recognized as being among the world's finest. For more information and new openings, visit theluxurycollection.com or follow Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The Luxury Collection is proud to participate in Marriott Bonvoy, the new name of Marriott’s travel program replacing Marriott Rewards®, The Ritz- Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG). The program offers members an extraordinary portfolio of global brands, experiences on Marriott Bonvoy Moments and unparalleled benefits including earning points toward free hotel stays and nights toward Elite status recognition. To enroll for free or for more information about the program, visit MarriottBonvoy.marriott.com.
About Marriott International
Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 7,000 properties under 30 leading brands spanning 131 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company now offers one travel program, Marriott Bonvoy™, replacing Marriott Rewards®, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®(SPG). For more information, please visit our website at www.marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.marriottnewscenter.com . In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.
About Parker-Torres Design Inc.
Parker-Torres Design Inc. is an international interior design and interior architecture firm based in Boston, Formed in 2004 by Barbara Parker and Miriam Torres, their company of 25+ specializes in hospitality design. Each partner has more than thirty years of experience in this sphere, and both women draw upon their individual strengths to provide unique perspectives for every project.
Parker-Torres Design works with major hotel brands like Fairmont, Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, and Westin, as well as independent hoteliers. Their portfolio of projects includes the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey, the Boston Park Plaza, the InterContinental in Washington DC at The Wharf, and The Phoenician, a Luxury Collection Resort in Scottsdale. In addition to hotels, the breadth of their experience encompasses restaurants (with an in-house F&B team), country clubs and spas.
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