Saturday 7 July 2007


Tallawanta Lodge to join Grand Mercure hotel collection

Tallawanta Lodge in the Hunter Valley Gardens complex is set to go ‘Grand’ following the announcement today that the hotel will join Accor’s Grand Mercure collection from 21 January, 2008.

The Grand Mercure Hunter Valley Gardens, as it will be known following the rebranding, is a 72-room hotel that is part of the Hunter Valley Gardens development, one of the wine region’s premier tourist attractions.

Surrounded by stunning gardens, the Grand Mercure provides a range of accommodation styles including studio suites, garden studios, spa rooms, family rooms and suites.

The Presidential Suite has been individually designed and decorated with stylish antiques, tasteful art pieces, and features 15ft cathedral ceilings, a private dining room and spacious living area catering for up to six people. A private terrace overlooks the Mediterranean-style pool area and gardens. There is also a very stylish Library Suite, which features its own library, spa and fireplace as well as a wet bar and microwave, making it perfect for entertaining.

The hotel also provides a ‘one-stop’ conference and event destination, with modern meeting rooms including the Semillon Ballroom which can cater for up to 250 guests banquet-style and a range of indoor and outdoor spaces including the world-class gardens and Roche Wines vineyards.

Leisure facilities include tennis courts, a resort-style pool, sauna, spa, and Lodge Library, with the Hunter Valley Gardens Village – and all its attractions - right at the doorstep.

Accor’s Vice President Australia, Simon McGrath, said that with Accor’s experience in the Hunter Valley and its leading position in the meetings and conference sector, the group could build on the hotel’s already well established position in the Hunter’s hospitality and tourism market.

“We are very used to working in such integrated developments, having opened a Grand Mercure development at The Vintage in nearby Rothbury,” he said.

“The Hunter Valley is really working hard to build its tourism profile and attract larger number of conferences and incentive groups. The Hunter Valley Gardens complex is tailor-made for tourism and with Grand Mercure branding of Tallawanta Lodge we believe that we can attract an even wider market – interstate and international – to the Hunter to experience the region’s attractions.”

Nestled amongst the foothills of the Brokenback Ranges in the heart of Pokolbin, Hunter Valley Gardens development includes the largest display garden in the country with thousands of plants across 12 stunning display gardens including the Storybook Garden which features timeless nursery characters for the children, an Italian grotto, Chinese Garden, Indian Mosaic Garden and more, all linked with pathways and walks.

Created by Bill Roche and owned by Roche Group, the Hunter Valley Gardens complex also includes popular Harrigans Irish Pub & Accommodation; Lazzarini’s fine dining restaurant; Hunter Valley Gardens Village with a range of boutiques and restaurants; Roche Wines cellar door; picnic areas and playgrounds plus a private chapel for weddings or christenings.

Grand Mercure Hunter Valley Gardens will become the 20th Grand Mercure Hotel in Australia, joining an exclusive collection of distinctive deluxe hotels. The Grand Mercure name is also present in other premier wine-growing regions including the Grand Mercure Mt Lofty House in the Adelaide Hills; Grand Mercure Links Lady Bay on the Fleurieu Peninsula; and Grand Mercure Busselton near the Margaret River vineyards in Western Australia. Grand Mercure is one of the fastest-growing upmarket hotel brands in Australia.

Accor, the European leader and a major global group in hotels, the global leader in services to corporate clients and public institutions, operates in nearly 100 countries with 170,000 employees. It offers to its clients over 40 years of expertise in its two core businesses:

* Hotels, with the Sofitel, Pullman, Novotel, Mercure, Suitehotel, Ibis, All Seasons, Etap Hotel, Formule 1 and Motel 6 brands, representing more than 4,000 hotels and nearly 500,000 rooms in 90 countries, as well as strategically related activities, such as Lenôtre.
* Services, with 23 million people in nearly 40 countries benefiting from Accor Services products in human resources, marketing services and expense management.

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