Atlanta Hotels go all-out for foreign guests
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
When W Hotel general manager Marylouise Fitzgibbon played host this month to a French meeting planner, she could have settled for learning a few quick French phrases or sought help from Atlanta’s French Consulate. Instead, Fitzgibbon assigned four members of her leadership team to conduct the entire pitch in French. From running down the hotel’s features to explaining the prevalence of Peachtree in the city’s street names, W Buckhead went Gallic in an attempt to land the business. “It goes beyond making them feel like home,” Fitzgibbon said. “It’s about services and experiences.” Atlanta hotels, hoping to attract international tourists who see the United States as a cheap getaway because of the weak dollar, are stepping up their game to compete. Gone are the days when the effort to appeal to foreign visitors meant meager translations of “welcome” in their native tongue.