Historic Hermitage Hotel Reopens On Valentine's Day

Friday, February 14, 2003

Nashville, Tn. - The Hermitage Hotel, which was Nashville's first
million-dollar hotel when it opened in 1910, reopens today - Valentine's Day - after a $17 million, 10-month restoration project.

The goal is to become Tennessee's first AAA Five Diamond and Mobil
Five-Star hotel, and one of the world's finest small luxury hotels.

"The reopening at long last restores grand luxury to this historic
hotel, making it a world-class destination point for visitors and
residents alike," said Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell, who held his
wedding reception at The Hermitage Hotel.

The hotel, which will hold its invitation-only grand opening
celebration on the evening of February 25, is on the National Register of Historic Places and is the only remaining commercial Beaux Arts structure in Tennessee. Located in downtown Nashville, directly
opposite the State Capitol, it has hosted six presidents, housed the
pro- and anti-suffrage forces in the 1920s, and held a place in the hearts of city residents since it was commissioned by 250 of them in 1908.

As well as 24-hour room and concierge service, the hotel now offers a
number of superior services unique to the Nashville area. They include: personalized storage trunks for frequent guests, DVD players
and complimentary high-speed internet access in every room, afternoon
tea in the lobby and butler service upon request.

"The Hermitage will be the hotel of choice for those who simply want
the best," says Prem Devadas, the hotel's managing partner. "Guests
will encounter a level of service and quality of materials never
before seen in Tennessee and the surrounding region."

The hotel's owner, Historic Hotels Nashville, LLC, has already
successfully renovated and transformed The Jefferson Hotel in
Richmond, VA. It elevated that hotel, built in 1895, from a AAA Three
Diamond property into one of the 23 hotels that carry both the AAA
Five Diamond and Mobil Five-Star ratings. In 2001, Forbes FYI
designated The Jefferson as the "Best Hotel in America." In March
2004, The Hermitage's other sister property - Kiawah Island Golf
Resort near Charleston, SC., will open The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island,
an ultra-luxury oceanfront hotel and spa, at a cost of $125 million.

The average size of a guestroom is now 475 square feet - large even
for a luxury hotel. The interior walls on the guest floors were
removed allowing the creation of completely new rooms. This was
essential, says Devadas, for the hotel to fulfill its mission of
offering a true luxury experience.

Prior to the renovation, the hotel had been an all-suite property.
Now, there are 112 oversized guestrooms, a 2,000-square-foot
presidential suite, three executive suites and seven junior suites.
Each room is decorated with fine furnishings and fabrics. Only linens
with fine thread counts and down-filled duvets have been used, while
every bathroom includes marble soaking tubs, double vanities, a
separate shower and enclosed water closet. In addition, each suite has
a Jacuzzi. Room rates will begin at $210 per night and rise to $1,500
per night for the presidential suite.

The façade of the hotel, including the original terra cotta, has been
cleaned and restored, while a climate-controlled porte-cochere was
added to reflect the design of a historic hotel. Inside the doors, a
foyer and gift shop have been created, while local artisans,
specializing in historic paint restoration, have repainted every
feature in the ceiling of the hotel's famous lobby. The renowned glass
ceiling has also been carefully restored. The Grand Ballroom's paneled walls, made from Circassian walnut imported from Russia, have been cleaned and restored to their original luster. A Capitol view fitness room has also been added on the mezzanine level, along with marble locker rooms and massage treatment rooms.

Below the lobby, the hotel's infamous art deco men's room has been upgraded, but the green and black glass décor has been retained. The
renowned Capitol Grille restaurant has also undergone a complete
facelift, including new furniture, chandeliers and a grand new entrance. The restaurant, which was home to the Francis Craig Orchestra and a national radio show for several years, also has a new menu and executive chef, Sean Brock - who moved from Lemaire, The Jefferson Hotel's AAA Five Diamond restaurant.

The new menu features creative interpretations of southern cuisine
with an emphasis on the freshest and best available local products. It
also includes a la carte components, with regionally and historically
matched side dishes.

The Hermitage Hotel is a member of both Preferred Hotels & Resorts
Worldwide and Historic Hotels of America. For more information or
reservations, call 1-888-888-9414 or visit online at:
http://www.thehermitagehotel.com.



5 Beal's-Eyed Turtles Hatch At The Tennessee Aquarium

In a sunny space directly under one of the Tennessee Aquarium’s tallest glass peaks, senior herpetologist Bill Hughes is caring for a special group of Southeast Asian turtles. These ten adult Beal’s-eyed Turtles, Sacalia bealei, are members of a vanishing species.  This species has been listed as Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural ... (click for more)

Choose Your Chattanooga Fall Adventures

This fall, spend less time traveling and more time on your next adventure in Chattanooga, Tenn., second-time winner of  Outside  magazine’s “Best Town Ever.” Autumn in the Scenic City means cooler weather, brilliant changing colors, Oktoberfest celebrations, festivals and live music, outdoor adventure sports and even some thrilling Halloween experiences. Once here, ... (click for more)

Hutcheson Medical Center May Get Bankruptcy Trustee Who Would Focus On Sale Of Fort Oglethorpe Hospital

Hutcheson Medical Center may be headed for appointment of a bankruptcy trustee, who would focus on the sale of the financially-strapped Fort Oglethorpe hospital. An attorney told a bankruptcy court judge in Rome, Ga., on Wednesday afternoon that a buyer is discussing paying over $20 million for all the assets of the community hospital. Attorney Rob Williamson ... (click for more)

Hutcheson Medical Center Unsecured Creditors Committee Asks Trustee Be Appointed For Fort Oglethorpe Hospital; Asks Bankruptcy Not Be Dismissed

The Unsecured Creditors Committee of Hutcheson Medical Center is opposing a motion by U.S. Trustee Guy Gebhardt for a bankruptcy judge to dismiss the bankruptcy for the financially-ailing Fort Oglethorpe hospital.   Instead, the group is asking Judge Paul Bonapfel to appoint a trustee to oversee the Hutcheson finances. In a 16-page motion, the committee said if the bankruptcy ... (click for more)

Who's Responsible For East Ridge's Stadium? - And Response

There just can be no excuse for East Ridge High School's stadium being in such dangerous condition that it has been condemned.   Where is responsible for this? I know there are a few other stadiums like this as well. And there is no excuse for this.  Building new and beautiful schools, state of the art technology. Top athletic facilities as well. Yet, East Ridge ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Barners Trounce Who?

There is a website known as Grammarly that just completed a profound study. An automated proof-reading company (who I hope never finds out about me) collected 100 comments that each included over 50 words from the comment blogs of the nation’s preseason Top 25 college football teams. Then they fed them into the company’s huge algorithm computer and checked each fan base for punctuation, ... (click for more)