Hotel Indigo Unveils First LEED Gold Property in Athens, Georgia


Hotel Indigo Athens (Georgia, USA) to enhance and spotlight prominent local art and music scene

ATLANTA, GA – September 9, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Hotel Indigo announced the opening of its newest hotel, Hotel Indigo Athens University Area.  Slated to achieve LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) later this year, the hotel will be the first private development in Athens to achieve LEED certification and one of only five hotels in the nation to achieve Gold status.

The LEED green building certification system is the nationally recognized standard for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.  By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.

The five-story, 130-room hotel will also highlight Athens’ rich art and entertainment history with a full-service, on-site art gallery and music venue.  Mercury Art Works will feature fine artwork produced primarily by local artists with exhibitions changing seasonally.  An onsite, state-of-the-art music venue will host intimate musical performances by regionally and nationally acclaimed artists, including Christopher Cross, Shawn Mullins, Kim Carnes, and Edwin McCain.

“We are extremely pleased to announce the opening of Hotel Indigo Athens as it will be the first LEED Gold-certified hotel in IHG’s portfolio and the second LEED certified hotel for the brand,” said Gina LaBarre, vice president, Brand Delivery, Hotel Indigo. “By combining regionally-inspired design and sustainability with local art and music, Hotel Indigo Athens complements the unique character and charm of downtown and is sure to be a great addition to the community.”

The Hotel Indigo Athens was developed by Atlanta-based Rialto Property Partners, LLC and is managed by Park Place Hospitality Group from North Carolina. As property owners, Rialto is under a license agreement with a company in the InterContinental Hotels Group.

“We are excited to have created something that is very unique to Athens, yet at the same time, also very reflective of the city and the community itself,” said Rick Fine, CEO of Rialto Property Partners.  “By combining an upscale hotel environment that fuses the rich local art and music scene with the best in environmental responsibility, we’re building on Athens’ strong downtown heritage and creating a memorable experience for those who visit this hotel.”

To ensure LEED Gold certification, Rialto Property Partners engaged Melaver Inc., a Savannah-based consulting firm for its expertise in sustainable development.  Recycled and locally-manufactured materials were utilized in the building’s construction and all guestroom furniture was sourced from a regional manufacturer within 500 miles from the hotel.  Additional green innovations include: a regenerative elevator; low-flow plumbing fixtures; an outdoor water cistern that collects condensation from the air conditioning system to supply irrigation to courtyard foliage; and a variable-refrigerant-flow-zoning heating and air conditioning system.

Located at 500 College Ave. in the heart of downtown Athens, the hotel is just five blocks from the University of Georgia campus and within easy walking distance of Sanford Stadium, the Classic Center, restaurants, shops and more than 30 music venues.

Taking inspiration from Athens’ distinct and Southern heritage, Atlanta-based Surber Barber Choate & Hertlein Architects Inc. shaped the building to be reminiscent of the region’s covered bridges, and Ellen Hanson Designs of New York City gave the interiors a “southern farmstead modern” feel.  Embracing the brand’s Interpret Indigo design platform, each guestroom features oversized locally-reflective photo murals of native flowers found in a nearby garden.  The images were taken by well-known local photographer Rinne Allen.

Hotel Indigo Athens features airy and inviting guestrooms, including 12 suites with oversized beds and plush bedding.  Hard surface flooring creates a fresh residential feel and each room is complemented with a high-definition flat screen TV, CD player, coffee from local roaster Jittery Joe’s, and spa-inspired showers with Aveda products.

Dining options include Phi Bar, serving locally-inspired gourmet menu items with a full-service bar. Additionally, the hotel provides guests complimentary Wi-Fi in public spaces and 24-hour access to the hotel’s business center, an onsite meeting space and a fitness studio.

Hotel Indigo participates in IHG’s guest loyalty program, Priority Club® Rewards.  With 44 million members worldwide, Priority Club Rewards is the industry’s first and largest guest loyalty program. Guests can enroll for free by logging on at, by calling 1-888-211-9874 or by inquiring at the front desk of this hotel or any of IHG’s more than 4,300 hotels worldwide.

About Hotel Indigo

Meeting the desires of today’s business and leisure traveler, Hotel Indigo is an upscale boutique brand that delivers a refreshing and inviting guest experience that is truly reflective of the local community.  There are currently 31 Hotel Indigo properties open worldwide and more than 60 hotels under development, either in the pipeline or in final negotiation.  By the end of 2009, Hotel Indigo will almost double its footprint in the America with opening properties in New York City, San Antonio and Miami Beach.  For more information on Hotel Indigo, or to make reservations, please visit

About Rialto Property Partners, LLC

Rialto Property Partners, LLC specializes in sustainable development, bringing to market projects that meet LEED criteria and promote responsible building practices. Additionally, Rialto provides pre-development services, which include land acquisition, project consulting and conceptualization, joint venture partner development, and development financing.  For more information please visit

About Melaver, Inc.

Melaver, Inc. is a 3rd-generation family business that develops, acquires, renovates, manages, owns, and brokers commercial and residential real estate in the southeastern U.S. The Melaver portfolio consists of 8 LEED Certified projects, and approximately 1.5 million square feet of holdings in Savannah, Augusta, Atlanta, Huntsville, and Birmingham, with offices located in Savannah, Atlanta, and Birmingham, AL.  Melaver is focused on the triple-bottom line of economic performance, environmental footprint, and social engagement with the community. Melaver has received the Argon Award For Visionary Leadership in Sustainability to a Georgia based business leader (2006), as well as the PACE Award from the Clean Air Campaign for Energy Efficient Property Management (2005);  and Awards for Historic Restoration from the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation (2004) and for Historic Preservation from The Historic Savannah Foundation (2003 & 1999).  For more information please visit

Media Contacts:

Caroline Sanfilippo, Hotel Indigo PR, ">, 770-604-2495

Caroline Counihan, Hotel Indigo PR, ">, 770-604-2090

Notes to Editors:

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is the world’s largest hotel group by number of rooms. IHG owns, manages, leases or franchises, through various subsidiaries, over 4,300 hotels and almost 630,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories around the world. The Group owns a portfolio of well recognised and respected hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites® and Candlewood Suites®, and also manages the world’s largest hotel loyalty programme, Priority Club® Rewards with 44 million members worldwide.

IHG has nearly 1,600 hotels in its development pipeline, which will create 140,000 jobs worldwide over the next few years.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group’s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales.

IHG offers information and online reservations for all its hotel brands at and information for the Priority Club Rewards programme at For the latest news from IHG, visit our online Press Office at


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