In airport news, Minneapolis-St. Paul is the latest facility to announce plans for a new on-site hotel; Delta reopens a SkyClub at Dallas/Ft. Worth; United downsizes at Cleveland; JetBlue has a new amenity for passengers at New York JFK; and O’Hare welcomes new food and beverage concessions.
Denver International Airport officials cut the ribbon on a new on-site Westin hotel last fall; on-site airport hotels are coming soon to San Francisco International and Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson; and now Minneapolis-St. Paul will get one as well, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Minneapolis developer Graves Hospitality will begin work this summer on a 300-room, 12-story hotel at the airport’s entrance, with completion expected by early 2018. It will be operated by InterContinental Hotels, the same firm that will manage Atlanta’s new airport hotel.
Last year, Delta had to move its Sky Club at Dallas/Ft. Worth International to a temporary location in order to accommodate renovation work, but now it has reopened the club at its previous site between Gates E10 and E11. Delta said the refreshed DFW Club can accommodate 114 persons in its 7,800 square feet. The Sky Club offers free food and beverages, Wi-Fi and power outlets for passengers, and serves up a local beer, Deep Ellum Brewing IPA. The airline opened a renovated Sky Club at Nashville last month, and plans to cut the ribbon on new Sky Clubs later this year at the Atlanta, Seattle and Denver airports.
Speaking of airport lounges, United Airlines has reportedly pledged to keep its United Club in Cleveland Hopkins Airport’s Concourse C open through 2029 even though the airline’s operations have downsized considerably there. The Cleveland Plain Dealer said that a new lease agreement between United and the airport will give the airline just 14 gates, C-16 through C-29, at the far end of the C Concourse through 2029. United gave up several closer-in C gates. Several years ago, United/Continental had up to 41 gates at CLE; it decided two years ago to end the airport’s hub status. Airport officials said American Airlines is expected to take on five of the vacant Concourse C gates.
The newest amenity at JetBlue’s New York JFK Terminal 5 is a set of four new “JetNap EnergyPods” where passengers can catch a few winks. (A few is right – they’re available free on a first-come, first served basis, but only for 20-minute naps, the airline said.) Users can plug their own headphones into the pods, which feature privacy visors and built-in speakers that reduce background noise. Personal items can be stowed in internal storage bins, and users are awakened with lights, music and vibrations. The pods were developed by Long Island-based MetroNaps.
Newly opened food concessions at Chicago O’Hare include a restaurant called Summer House Santa Monica in Terminal 2 and Green Market in Terminal 3. Summer House, located past security across from the Coach and MAC stores, serves up California-influenced American cuisine and some grab-and-go items. It’s operated by Chicago’s Lettuce Entertain You restaurant group, which has a Summer house in the city’s Lincoln Park neighborhood. Terminal 3’s Green Market, near Gate L3, offers selections from local Chicago providers like Red Hen Bread, Molino Baking, Chicago Classic Confections, Vosges Chocolates and Breadcrumb, as well as local brewers Berghoff and Goose Island.
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