Hotel Delays Not Expected to Affect QuiltWeek
By Tim Brockwell
PADUCAH, KY - The new Holiday Inn on Paducah's riverfront may not yet be finished, but the director of the upcoming American Quilter's Society QuiltWeek says that likely won't have much of an impact on the event.
Construction began on the new hotel in Oct. 2015, but delays have pushed back original estimates on the completion date. Hotel developer Lingate Hospitality recently announced they won't begin taking reservations at the 123 room hotel until July 1.
American Quilter's Society Executive Director Bonnie Browning says that while it would be nice for visitors to have the option to stay so close to the action during QuiltWeek, which runs April 26-29, organizers had already factored in the possibility that the hotel wouldn't be done in time.
"We have to actually plan hotel rooms for our teachers and our sponsors and our vendors a year in advance, and since we didn't know a definite deadline for it to be done we just assumed it would not be done for this year's show. So, basically it's not going to have any major impact on the show, except it will be nice when we have those extra 123 rooms available." Browning said.
Browning said that even if the hotel were already open, its 123 room capacity means it wouldn't come close to being able to accommodate a significant portion of the more than 30,000 people expected to flood downtown Paducah for the event. She said what the hotel will offer is a major benefit to the Julian Carroll Convention Center.
"They only have 123 rooms, so if you were talking two people to a room, you're only talking 250 people. I don't think that will have a major impact on us growing," Browning said. "What it will impact though, is the kinds of groups the convention center will be able to attract because they have a hotel right next door. People really do want their hotel space right next door if they are going to come to a town that they're not familiar with for a convention. From that aspect, this new hotel should be a real boon for the convention center."
Browning added that it's not uncommon for building projects of this size to run into issues that cause delays in opening. "They are projecting now a June date. That's why they are not going to accept reservations until July 1. With construction you just never know," Browning said. "They are working with a hotel chain who also has some input on things they have to do for certain standards. So, all of that kind of folds into the mix. Those opening dates are often fluid dates until you get everything done."
Browning said she is glad that visitors will likely be able to reserve rooms at the new hotel for the upcoming fall quilt show in September.