Hotel Landing attracts big business to small town
 
Hotel Landing attracts big business to small town
20 SEPTEMBER 2017 12:12 PM

The Hotel Landing opened in the small community of Wayzata, Minnesota, on 16 June, and GM Katie Neufeld said the hotel has—and will—benefit from corporate business from local companies, as well as the 2018 Super Bowl in nearby Minneapolis. 

WAYZATA, Minnesota—The Hotel Landing in the small community of Wayzata, Minnesota, had some twists and turns before hitting an opening date of 16 June, but GM Katie Neufeld said it was a great learning experience, and the hotel has had notable success so far, which is expected to continue.

The Hotel Landing, which is the first hotel to open near Lake Minnetonka in 50 years, Neufeld said, was built from the ground up by BohLand Development as part of a project that also includes a senior living facility and luxury condominiums.

The reasoning for not having a hotel opening near the lake in so many years was mostly a supply and demand issue, Neufeld said.

“The other (hotels near the lake) were much older, built in the early 1900s; they closed just because a lack of necessity,” she said. “So then (for) our owner, Steve Bohl, and the BohLand Development team, this is something they had their sights on for several years, so they made it a reality.” 

The hotel has 92 rooms, 30 luxury condominiums, just over 4,000 square feet of meeting space, a spa and a restaurant, according to Neufeld.

Local business
Wayzata has a population of a little over 4,000 people, but Neufeld said the town is home to many CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, which means local business for The Hotel Landing.

“So they’re able to have meetings essentially at home, which is really exciting for them,” she said. “We’ve had a great corporate following, and a great social following because weekend weddings on the lake are big events in this part of the country, so we’ve had huge successes with both.”

General Mills is one of many businesses located right up the road from the hotel, Neufeld said. She anticipates those businesses will bring more guests and revenue to the hotel. She added that social groups like weddings are more seasonal, in the fall and summer, but The Hotel Landing “will have corporate business 12 months of the year.”

Minneapolis is hosting the 2018 Super Bowl, which The Hotel Landing is already sold out for, Neufeld said.

“What is typically a quiet time in this part of the country will be a little crazy, which is great,” she added.

Meeting a tight opening deadline
Meeting tight construction deadlines to open the hotel by 16 June was both a challenge and a learning experience for the staff at The Hotel Landing, Neufeld said, and employees—in various roles—began preparing on 9 June.

“It was a wonderful team-building opportunity, although it was very strenuous, literally unpacking every box and making every bed, washing every spoon, knife, fork, that whole process, it was definitely a challenge but it was also such a great learning experience,” she said. “I work for Hay Creek Hotels out of Exeter, New Hampshire, and using all of their resources and their corporate teams and corporate chef and our vice president of operations and human resources, everybody, it was a great challenge.”

Neufeld said one of the issues her properties faced was difficulty recruiting team members, particularly due to the low national unemployment numbers. But Minnesota is home to a few colleges and universities, so the hotel was able to bring in college students to work at the hotel.

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