Wednesday, September 3, 2008

New Orleans Hotels Saved From Storm

New Orleans hotels, for the most part, were spared major damage by Hurricane Gustav and plan to re-open soon.

General Manager for the Marriott hotels in the city said he expected most of the hotels to reopen by Friday or Saturday. All of the hotels had power and the only damage were some fallen trees.

The Intercontinental also plans to reopen on Saturday with only some minor damage caused by water leaks and wind. Same thing for the Ritz-Carlton which was spared any major damage.

Drury Hotels regional manager Brian Collins spent Saturday boarding up the New Orleans property, leaving its key with the police-officer husband of its general manager, because no one else could be found to guard it after the city was evacuated.

Then Houston-based Collins moved northwest to the Lafayette (La.) Drury Inn & Suites, which was jammed with evacuees and employees. The team traveling with him boarded up windows, brought in bottled water, tuna and other non-perishable eats and an extra generator.

When Gustav hit Lafayette on Monday, Collins says, "It was nerve-racking. A couple of windows in the atrium popped out. There was slight wind and water damage." But by Tuesday, all 100 rooms were expected to be functional.

Casino's in the Mississippi Gulf were closed on Tuesday awaiting approval from the gambling commission to reopen, but were likewise spared any major damage.

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