Influx of arrivals triggers hotel boom in Alaska

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Fox IslandANCHORAGE--The growth of arrivals in Alaska has sparked a miniature hotel boom, with new properties coming on line and others taking shape to accommodate the influx of tourists.

Most of the construction has taken place in Anchorage, but other communities have enjoyed the miniboom, as well:

Anchorage

Already awash in motels and hotels, Anchorage will soon have a 410-room Marriott. The hotel is under construction at a downtown site on 7th Avenue between H and I streets. It will open in summer of 1999, joining the Sheraton, Hilton and Captain Cook in the upper echelon of Anchorage accommodations. Also nearing completion in Anchorage is a Residence Inn with 148 rooms, scheduled to come on line in the spring of '99.

These properties will join several others that have opened in the past two years. Making their debut in 1998 were the Fairfield Suites (102 rooms), the Ramada Limited (50 rooms) and the Clarion Hotel (110 rooms). Anchorage hotels that opened in 1997 included a Courtyard by Marriott (154 rooms) near the airport, a Microtel Inn & Suites (77 rooms) and a Hampton Inn (101 rooms).

Juneau

The latest hotel to open its doors in the state capital is the Frontier Suites Airport Hotel. As the name suggests, the property is conveniently located just three blocks from the Juneau airport in the Mendenhall Valley area of the city. All 40 suites are equipped with kitchens; some have in-room Jacuzzis. The hotel runs a complimentary shuttle to and from the airport.

Seward

The Harborview Inn offers scenic views of Mount Marathon and easy access to downtown and the Alaska Railroad depot. The property opened in May 1998 with 13 rooms and one suite. There are two fireplaces, one in the lobby and another in the suite. Custom fabrics and furnishings give the hotel a distinctive and welcoming atmosphere throughout. In March another hotel will open its doors. The Hotel Edgewater will have 70 rooms and suites facing the bay and a restaurant on the premises. The property is located next to the SeaLife Center as well as the new Chugach Heritage Center.

Talkeetna

A hotel with some of the best views of Mount McKinley to be found anywhere will open here in May. The hotel, described by its owners as "a luxury Alaskan hotel," is being developed by the Cook Inlet Regional Corporation, one of Alaska's 13 native corporations.

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