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VIDEO: Cuomo in Niagara Falls to cut ribbon on DoubleTree Hotel

Mon, Jan 23rd 2017 08:10 pm
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

Governor reaffirms commitment to Western New York; announces grand opening of new, $37M DoubleTree Hotel in Niagara Falls

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday announced the grand opening of the new, $37 million DoubleTree Hotel by Hilton in downtown Niagara Falls. The project, which included the demolition of a portion of the former Fallside Hotel and Conference Center, along with the renovation of a four-story section of the building, connects to a newly constructed nine-story tower.

The grand opening of the hotel coincides with the state's work to enhance access to the waterfront on the Niagara Scenic Parkway, the former Robert Moses Parkway.

The property was developed by Merani Hotel Group. It opened last month.

"Downtown Niagara Falls' resurgence continues with the new DoubleTree Hotel - a vital project, which is creating good-paying jobs, driving economic opportunity, and building on the successful growth of New York's booming tourism sector," Cuomo said. "New York state's commitment to Niagara Falls, including the removal of underused expressway segments of the former Robert Moses Parkway, recent renovations to Niagara Falls State Park and the private-public developments in downtown, are all helping this vibrant city realize its true potential as a world-class tourist destination."

WATCH:

 

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo celebrated the opening of the DoubleTree by Hilton in Niagara Falls and highlighted his proposal for additional economic development in Western New York. He is pictured, far right, with Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster, Empire State Development President/CEO/Commissioner Howard Zemsky, and Merani Hotel Group President Faisal Merani (Photo courtesy of Gov. Cuomo's Flickr page) 

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo celebrated the opening of the DoubleTree by Hilton in Niagara Falls and highlighted his proposal for additional economic development in Western New York. He is pictured, far right, with Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster, Empire State Development President/CEO/Commissioner Howard Zemsky, and Merani Hotel Group President Faisal Merani (Photo courtesy of Gov. Cuomo's Flickr page)

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo at the podium. 

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo at the podium.  

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo at the podium.

"We are very proud to be opening our third hotel in Niagara Falls, New York," Merani Hotel Group President Faisal Merani said. "From the moment we announced this project, I have had a countless number of people telling me stories about the glory days of the Parkway Inn; about the time they spent in the bar, about having weddings and proms in the ballroom. Of course, those stories were always followed by sadness that the property has fallen into such disrepair. I hope that, with our $37 million investment, we can bring those glory days back, and create whole new stories and experiences at this historic property. "

The 192-room hotel, located adjacent to Niagara Falls State Park and overlooking the upper rapids of the Niagara River, boasts 16,000 square feet of meeting and banquet facilities, including a ballroom that can hold weddings of up to 450 people. The full service steakhouse, Parkway Prime, serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with an outdoor patio area facing the Niagara River.

The project helps to fulfill the need for additional quality downtown lodging, creates new jobs and contributes to the overall beautification and usability of the area.

DoubleTree by Hilton Niagara Falls 

DoubleTree by Hilton Niagara Falls 

Merani Hotel Group received a $2 million convertible loan from Empire State Development's Upstate Regional Blueprint Fund, and a $750,000 capital grant from USA Niagara Development Corp., a subsidiary of ESD, to redevelop the former Fallside Hotel.

"New York state's strategic economic development blueprint for Niagara Falls tourism has paved the way for significant private investment that is transforming the area," ESD President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said. "The Merani Hotel Group's redevelopment of the Fallside Hotel and Conference Center into a DoubleTree by Hilton hotel is further evidence of the state's commitment to job creation and the revitalization of this iconic destination."

Including the DoubleTree Hotel, downtown Niagara Falls has five new hotels recently completed or currently under construction, and one hotel renovation/retail expansion project - totaling nearly 600 new rooms and more than $90 million in total project costs. USAN has also acquired the historic Hotel Niagara for future development and is working on a development agreement for the Wonder Falls Resort, a proposed adaptive reuse of the former Rainbow Centre Mall that has a hotel component.

New York state is also investing more than $60 million in infrastructure improvements for the Niagara Scenic Parkway. The southern section (Riverway Project), with full completion expected this spring, includes $20 million to restore access to the waterfront and in Niagara Falls State Park by removing a mile of former elevated expressway that once stood between the city and the upper Niagara River. This move is designed to boost tourism by facilitating hiking, biking, fishing and cross-country skiing, all accessible from city streets for the first time in more than 50 years.

The northern section involves removal of an underutilized two-mile segment from Main Street to Findlay Drive to be replaced with open space, scenic overlooks and recreational trails to make the waterfront more accessible.

The $42 million project marks the largest expansion of green space since the Niagara Reservation was designed in 1885, and will link the Niagara River Gorge and Falls into a single destination to allow easier access to the water's edge.

City of Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster said, "The governor's investments in Niagara Falls and laser-like focus on Western New York has resulted in unprecedented economic growth and opportunity. This new hotel, the fifth under construction in in recent years, will build on the progress we have achieved and spur additional gains - creating jobs and driving tourism in the region.

"Niagara Falls has a strong partner in Gov. Cuomo, and I look forward to working together to keep the momentum moving forward for generations to come."

Merani Hotel Group (www.meranihotelgroup.com) is a privately held company with experience developing, operating and managing hotels, restaurants and retail outlets in Niagara Falls, New York, and Niagara Falls, Ontario. Along with its Canadian properties the Sterling Inn & Spa and Days Inn & Suites, the Canadian hotelier also owns and operates the Four Points by Sheraton and Holiday Inn hotels in Niagara Falls, New York.

 

 

 

Images of the top-level DoubleTree rooms, and the views they offer; plus photos of the ground-level dining area.

 

 

 

 

 

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