RENAMED, RENOVATED AND THE BRAND NEW
The kickoff won’t be until February 2025 for the New Orleans Saints and Caesars Entertainment rebrand of New Orleans’ iconic downtown stadium as the Caesars Superdome. The 20-year, exclusive naming-rights partnership means the Caesars Superdome will host all Saints home football games, and Super Bowl LIX to be played in February 2025. The building will also host the 2022 NCAA Men’s Final Four, the annual Sugar Bowl and College Football Playoff contests, a variety of concerts and hundreds of other annual events including Essence Festival, the Bayou Classic football game between Grambling State and Southern University, the New Orleans Bowl and the Louisiana State High School Athletic Association Football Championships. Caesars Superdome will stand as testament to Caesars’ commitment to the New Orleans Saints and to the city of New Orleans as it embarks on a $325 million renovation to transform Harrah’s New Orleans into Caesars New Orleans. “This partnership sends a strong message about the positive future for the New Orleans Saints, Caesars Entertainment, and the entire state of Louisiana,” said Saints Owner Gayle Benson. “That message states that companies with the global reach of Caesars Entertainment are investing in our city, state and region. Caesars has long been one of the world’s most respected entertainment companies. Caesars is creating a first-class multimillion-dollar entertainment facility. The significant investment also demonstrates the strength of their commitment to our state and region. “The partnership between the Superdome and Caesars Entertainment represents a powerful combination of two legendary entertainment brands,” said Michael Hecht, President & CEO of Greater New Orleans, Inc. “The Superdome contributes close to $600 million in annual economic impact to the state of Louisiana, and Caesars is the largest gaming company in America. Together, they will ensure that our iconic stadium drives even more jobs, tax revenue, and global brand awareness for New Orleans and Louisiana.” This most recent project will enhance the spectator experience, adding field level suites, improved concessions and vertical spaces which improve the environment and amenities and ingress and egress, as well as operational upgrades crucial to event operation. This renovation is expected to be completed by Super Bowl LIX. The naming rights partnership for the Caesars Superdome fits perfectly with the corporation’s burgeoning local investment. Caesars Entertainment is also doing a $325 million renovation and construction project to transform the Harrah’s New Orleans into Caesars New Orleans. The project will create a flagship resort steps from the French Quarter, including an all-new 340 room hotel tower and new culinary and hospitality offerings within the casino, putting hundreds of people to work on the project, and creating more than 500 sustainable, long-term jobs.
Four-story Residence Inn Tampa Wesley Chapel, overlooking the 80-acre Advent Health Sports Arena at the Wiregrass Ranch Sports Campus of Pasco Count, FL opens in December. Managed by Mainsail Lodging & Development (Tampa, FL), the 128-room Residence Inn will feature flexible indoor meeting and event space, a rooftop bar, and an outdoor terrace shared social space. Additional guest amenities will include a 24/7 “grab & go” market, complimentary breakfast, and a state-of-the-art fitness center. Residence Inn Tampa Wesley Chapel is part of the Marriott Cleanliness Council, which implements expert protocols for working to defeat COVID-19 through in-house and outside expertise in food and water safety, hygiene and infection prevention, and hotel cleaning and safety standards.
The Inn on Fifth & Club Level Suites in downtown Naples, FL has a new logo representing the future of the property’s distinguished history and is showcasing the logo in a newly ;aunched website, www.InnOnFifth.com. The redesign by Naples-based Exploritech has features to improve functionality, is vibrant to better suit the evolving look, feel and style of the Inn on Fifth and 5th Avenue, and to reflect the city’s changing demographic. Phil McCabe, owner of the Inn on Fifth, says the website is easily used on any device, from mobile to desktop. The site offers well organized content and an array of resources, including reservation links to restaurants, food and beverage menus, gift card purchases, resources for meeting and event planners, and much more. It also offers travelers a few online-only perks, including special packages and Florida resident rates. The new logo incorporates the iconic building’s familiar flag-tipped towers and soaring archways into a stylish line art abstraction. Beginning September, the next round of improvements at the Inn on Fifth will include a completely redesigned Club Level lounge, where guests enjoy breakfast, a top-shelf, self-service bar, and evening receptions with hors d’oeuvres and sweets. In the main building, all public spaces and hallways will be redone with new wood molding, new carpet, and modern lighting. Additionally, meeting spaces are being upgraded, including floor-to-ceiling makeovers, introducing fresh new shades of blue and grey consistent with the hotel’s overall design motif. The AAA Four-Diamond, Inn on Fifth features 119 luxurious rooms, including 32 Club Level Suites, in two iconic buildings, steps from one another across Fifth Avenue.
The AAA Four-Diamond Reunion Resort & Golf Club (Kissimmee, FL) has reopened Eleven, the resort’s updated rooftop restaurant atop The Grande Tower. The restaurant has floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the pristine championship golf greens and dramatic views of the 2,300-acre property. Executive Chef Robert Gioia is joined by Chef de Cuisine Justin Crum, Mixologist Adam Flannigan, and Restaurant Managers Zuilecia Garcia and J.R. Rodrigues to present their new tapas-style menu, complemented by creative craft cocktails and live entertainment. Among some of the signature small plates on the menu are Wagyu slides, feta dip, Bahamian scallop ceviche and cinnamon bread pudding. Hand-crafted cocktails such as a jalapeno margarita and blueberry basil mojito are now offered alongside the signature cocktail, the Water Hazard, which comes with a floating golf ball.
September 2-6: The world’s largest Beatles-inspired music festival returns to the Big Four Station Park (Jeffersonville, IN), celebrating the peace, love and music of the 60s and 70s with headline band, Jefferson Starship (winners of the 2016 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award). Festival will also feature Grammy-winning manager/record producer and Sirius XM Radio host Peter Asher, formerly of British pop duo Peter and Gordon, and former Wings guitarist Laurence Juber and drummer Steve Holley. More than 45 bands in all. Abbey Road on the River organizers have said all concerts (for the first time) will be outdoors. Attendees are required to show proof of full Covid-19 vaccination or a negative Covid test obtained within 72 hours of attending the event. Increased hand sanitizer and hand washing stations will be on-site, and cleaning crews will do frequent cleanings in high touch areas. Single tickets, buy online with WAVE 3 NEWS and save.
September 4 -5: 2021 5th Annual Gulf Coast Summer Fest – Jazz Edition on Pensacola Bay at the Pensacola Community Maritime Park (Pensacola, FL). Jazz musicians include Eric Darius, Norman Brown, Lindsey Webster, Gerald Albright, Althea Rene, Elan Trotman, Peter White, Riley Richard, Lin Rountree, Vincent Ingala, Doc Powell, Alex Bugnon, Euge Groove, Jeff Lorber, Paula Atherton and Cindy Bradley. No beach umbrellas, grills, tents, glass containers, children under 18, or weapons allowed, but do bring coolers, lawn chairs, umbrellas.
(850) 432-0800; https://www.gulfcoastsummerfestjazzedition.com/
September 9-11: Flora-Bama’s 8th Annual Bulls On The Beach, featuring professional Bull Riders from around the country. If it becomes necessary for the event to be cancelled, organizers will send an email with details. Refunds will only be given if the rodeo has been cancelled due to Covid-19 mandates and regulations. Flora-Bama Lounge, Package and Oyster Bar (Pensacola, FL
November 5-9: Fair Park in Dallas, TX, World Food Championships, a multi-day live culinary competition who compete in 10 categories (Bacon, Barbecue, Burger, Chef, Dessert, Recipe, Sandwich, Seafood, Soup and Steak). To become a food judge, you must take the WFC’s online certification course that explains the E.A.T methodology. Certified judges then request and receive available seats at the next scheduled WFC event. https://www.wfcfoodjudge.com/; twitter @WorldFoodChamp), Facebook and Instagram (@WorldFoodChampionships).
Karen Kuzsel is a writer-editor based in the Orlando area who specializes in the hospitality, entertainment, meetings & events industries. She is an active member of International Live Events Association, Meeting Professionals International and the Society of Professional Journalists. She is now serving on the 20121-2022 MPI Independent and Small Business Owners Advisory Board. Karen writes about food & wine, spas, destinations, venues, meetings & events. A career journalist, she has owned magazines, written for newspapers, trade publications, radio and TV. As her alter-ego, Natasha, The Psychic Lady, she is a featured entertainer for corporate and social events. Karen@KarenKuzsel.com; www.karenkuzsel.com; www.ThePsychicLady.com; @karenkuzsel; @thepsychiclady.