More than 20 years after visionary planners conceived of a modern globally connected airport with an on-site hotel and rail service to downtown Denver, Thursday’s opening of the Westin Denver International Airport completed that decades-old vision.
Denver International Airport joined with Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock and Westin Hotels and Resorts in celebrating the opening of the Westin Denver International Airport hotel and conference center and its adjoining open-air plaza, which sit upon the airport’s new transit center that is set to open in April 2016. Together, these projects make up the DEN Hotel and Transit Center.
The glass and steel structure comprises more than 433,000 square feet. The modern hotel and conference center offers 519 guest rooms, 35 spacious suites and a 37,500-square-foot conference center. The conference center includes two ballrooms and 15 additional meeting rooms and boardrooms of varying sizes. The largest ballroom encompasses 7,500 square feet, accommodating up to 750 people. The meeting space’s most dramatic feature is a 10,000-square-foot prefunction area showcasing a panoramic, three-story, floor-to-ceiling glass wall that is approximately 100 feet wide.
Guests of the Westin Denver International Airport will enjoy ongoing programs, events, entertainment and relaxation at this new airport destination. Beyond that, guests will be connected to Denver’s downtown via RTD’s new University of Colorado A Line – scheduled to begin service on April 22 – that will take passengers from DIA to Denver Union Station in about 37 minutes.
“Today, we open an entirely new chapter in our international airport’s history,” Hancock said. “With this stunning new hotel, conference center and open-air plaza, we are elevating Denver and the Rocky Mountain region to new heights. The hotel and commuter line set to open in April are the first steps toward leveraging DIA as an
economic powerhouse that will create tens of thousands of new jobs and bring more business opportunity to Metro Denver.”
The mayor continued, “Thank you to the strong leaders, visionaries and a tremendous community for making today possible. I’m proud of the progress we’ve made and prouder still of the future we have forged together.”
Designed by global architect, Gensler, and built by MHS, a tri-venture comprised of contractors Mortenson, Hunt and Saunders, the towering LEED certified building honors flight and aviation, symbolizing wings of a bird in flight hovering above the plaza and the iconic tents of the Jeppesen Terminal.
Gensler also designed the 82,000-square-foot, open-air plaza, framed by two 150-foot canopies that connect the terminal to the hotel and transit center. The plaza is set to become Denver’s newest venue for arts, entertainment and relaxation, connecting the community to DIA.
“(The) opening of the Westin Denver International Airport marks the achievement of a major milestone towards our goal of solidifying DEN’s place on the world map, expanding economic growth in our region and elevating the overall travel experience in and through the Mile High City,” said airport CEO Kim Day. “This state-of-the-art addition will further the transformation of Denver’s airport into a destination in itself, with easy connectivity to all that Denver and the Rocky Mountain region have to offer.”
Soon after opening, guests will be able to check in right from their phones with SPG Keyless Entry, completely bypassing the front desk. Each room will include one of Westin’s signature Heavenly Beds and Heavenly Bath amenities, including the Heavenly Shower. Business travelers can rejuvenate and relax with Rocky Mountain views from the top-story WestinWORKOUT Fitness Studio, while families swim in the pool, both located in the “saddle” of the building.
“Denver is growing, and travelers from around the world flock to Colorado to enjoy the pristine Rocky Mountains. Now, business and personal travelers alike can enjoy every aspect of Westin’s brand promise for A Better You, right at the airport,” said Tom Curley, general manager of the Westin Denver International Airport.
In addition to all of its Heavenly amenities, guests at the Westin will also enjoy first-rate dining at the Grill & Vine Restaurant, complete with a spacious outdoor patio. Complimenting Westin’s core brand values, its menu will support wellness with simple, light, fresh foods while also focusing on locally sourced items, handcrafted cocktails and wines.
The expansive public art program at DIA and at the new Hotel and Transit Center will make traveling to Denver a topnotch artistic experience as well. The large-scale public art at the Hotel and Transit Center is focused on the three main public areas, starting at the train arrival area, at the escalator that ascends from the train hall to the plaza, and the plaza itself. All of DIA’s public art, including art within the hotel by Colorado artists, embrace aspects that reflect the region and enhance a sense of place at the airport. More information on the public art at DEN can be found at www.flydenver.com/art.