Leisure & Hospitality International - Spring 2015 - 65

R E NA I S S A N C E DA L L A S HO T E L

aluminum tables without linens. "The
tables are light and easy to handle,
great-looking in the space and rectangular, so it's unexpected," Woelffer
points out. "Ninety percent of what we
do is linenless. What we wanted to do
when we built this new ballroom was
have an unexpected experience.
"Typically, a group meeting has
chicken for lunch, and you sit at a table
with a white tablecloth," Woelffer says.
"We mix it up and use rectangular
tables. We do a family style dinner
where we have three entrees and pass
those around, typically like a Thanksgiving dinner at your house. It creates
more interactive participation with
the group customer when they're in
their meeting because of the different
setup and type of tables. We put down
coasters for the glassware, which cuts
down on the noise, so that's helped."
Linenless tables eliminate the cost
and environmental damage of laundering linens as well as the labor of
putting them out on tables. Like all hotels in the Marriott chain, a linen reuse
program is in effect for room towels.
To continue exceeding expectations
for group events, the hotel puts out
the La Tavola buffet system that uses
energy-efficient induction heat to cook
and warm food and allows chefs to
set humidity levels for the food. The
system also can keep food cool.

The songwriters tell stories about
how songs they wrote turned into No.
1 hits. "It's the story behind the song,
like an unplugged-type situation,"
Woelffer explains. "We did it in the City
View rooftop space and invited local
people in and charged an admission
fee and served drinks. So it's a great
way to involve the local community to
bring them into the hotel to see what
we're doing."
The Renaissance Dallas Hotel also
invites local artists ti install displays
in the lobby. "It creates activity in the
hotel," Woelffer points out. "We do two
events a week. It could be live music, it
could be a beverage tasting, a beer or
wine tasting, or a sweets demonstration by the chef. It's open to guests and
locals. We use social media to bring
locals in, and it's available to all the
guests in the hotel for free, as well."
The hotel has a full-time director of

sales and marketing onsite as well as
an offsite corporate marketing team
with which it works. "We go out to
trade magazines," Woelffer says. "I
send my team out to do industrial,
pharmaceutical and corporate meeting
trade shows in New York, Washington,
D.C., Arizona and Orlando. We try to
source business through our global
partners." The hotel also serves groups
of hundreds of alumni and families of
team members during college football
championships.
The addition and renovation are
contributing to the success of the
hotel. "The addition of the new space
has given us the opportunity to look at
larger group opportunities that we've
never done before," Woelffer says.
"Since we're the new shiny penny on
the block, we're getting a lot of site
inspections and interest in the hotel.
it's a real wow."

SONGWRITERS SERIES
To take advantage of its new rooftop
City View space and create marketing
excitement, the Renaissance Dallas
Hotel has established a songwriters
series. "One of our brand platforms
is to bring locals into the hotel and
activate that bar space," Woelffer says.
"We did a Nashville songwriters series
that brought in writers that write for
Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert and
Blake Shelton."

City View on the roof of the hotel's new addition has 6,000 square feet of indoor air-conditioned space and a view of downtown.

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