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  • Holiday Party &Awards Ceremony

    Thursday, January 12, 2017Sheraton Bloomington Hotel

  • Thank You to our Sponsors




    Strategic PartnersThe Allied members listed below have made significant year-long financial

    commitments to the Minnesota Lodging Association. We thank them for their support.

  • 2016 HonoreesHead of the House Award:

    Suzanne Sukalski

    Heart of the House Award: Jim Jarzyna

    Rising Star Award:Matthew Galaviz Reed

    Small Property of the Year:University Inn

    Large Property of the Year:BEST WESTERN PREMIER Nicollet Inn

    Allied Vendor of the Year: Furniture Industries, Inc.

    General Manager of the Year: Sue Jung

    Minnesota Hospitality Hall of Fame:Mark Dunn

  • Head of the House Award

    Suzanne SukalskiSuzanne began her job as Breakfast Hostess at the Hamp-ton Inn in Fairmont in 2012 and has enjoyed every day of work since. She came into the role after learning about the position in her Special Education Career Exploration class, which give students the ability to observe jobs at various businesses in the city of Fairmont. After observing various jobs in hotels and restaurants, Suzanne began to envision herself having a career in the hospitality industry and knew it was something she wanted to pursue after graduation.

    Her graduation picture and plans for the future were posted in the Fairmont news-paper and caught the eye of Jason Subbert, the General Manager of the Hampton Inn Fairmonts management company, TPI Hospitality. At Jasons behest, Suzanne received an application to apply to the hotel through school and, after an excep-tional interview, was offered the position only a few months after graduation!

    Suzanne has really come into her own at her job. Working at the hotel has helped her realize that being part of the Hampton Inn Fairmont team means being a part of something that is bigger than herself. The teamwork of the hotel staff shows that no ones job is small or insignificant; it takes everyone building off of one another to make the Hampton Inn Fairmont a successful business.

    Suzanne tries every day to give each guest a special experience. Whether its wear-ing colorful aprons that she sewed herself, or creating greeting cards to distribute to guests with candy, she is always looking for ways to brighten her guests day and help them feel as comfortable as possible.

    Suzanne hopes to continue her job at the Hampton Inn Fairmont for as long as she can and she is incredibly grateful for her co-workers and the confidence they have helped instill in her over the last four years.

    This award is new this year

  • Heart of the House Award

    Jim JarzynaJim Jarzyna has worked in various positions at the Minneapolis Marriott Southwest for 27 years. After earning a degree in Landscape and Horticulture at Dakota County Technical College in Rosemount, he began working for the hotels Maintenance Department in 1988. Jims responsibilities included various landscaping projects in the summer and snow removal in the winter. However, a few years later the hotel hired a private landscaping company to maintain the grounds. Not wanting to leave the property that he had come to love working for, Jim transferred into the Engineering Department and has been there ever since.

    Being in the Engineering Department has taught Jim to wear many hats. Not only does he have tasks to take care of in the custodial and housekeeping departments, but he also ensures the landscaping and snow removal is up to par with the hotels standards. He is also always available for short-notice maintenance issues such as switching out 49 lightbulbs in the ballroom right before a wedding was to start!

    Jim takes pride in his work at the property and it shows. He has been awarded Employee of the Month six times throughout his tenure and is also part of the exclusive Marriott Quarter Century Membership club for his 25+ years of service. Whats most important to Jim, however, is making sure the hotel guests are having an excellent and memorable stay.

    Jim has worked at the Minneapolis Marriott Southwest for almost three decades; he loves being part of the team and doesnt see himself going anywhere else. He likes to take the future one day at a time, but knows he will stay in the hotel industry for a while. He finds himself learning new things every day at his job and finds great joy in helping the guests have an excellent stay.

    This award is new this year

  • Rising Star Award

    Matthew Galaviz ReedMatthew didnt initially intend on having a career in the hospitality industry; he has an Associates degree in Computer Networking and Design from the Computer Learning Center and later earned a certificate in Interior Design from Penn Foster College. He moved to Minneapolis in 2012 in hopes of beginning a career with one of the many corporate headquarters housed in the Cities.

    However, he needed a job immediately, so he took a Front Desk Agent position at the Minneapolis Marriott Southwest. He intended to take it only as a short-term job; but after just a few weeks there, his view began to evolve. Matthew realized that the hospitality industry isnt about exchanging pleasantries with guests in exchange for a paycheck; he began to understand that it is inviting someone into your home and making it theirs for the duration of their stay.

    Matthew knew this was no longer just a job for him; this is where he was meant to be and where he would develop his career. With incredible drive and unbridled passion, Matthew advanced quickly at the Minneapolis Marriott Southwest from Front Desk Agent to Night Audit to Food and Beverage Operations Lead to Rooms Controller to Marketing and Events Coordinator and then to Sales Manager all in less than five years! And he hasnt stopped; in December, Matthew accepted a promotion to Complex Marketing Manager at W Minneapolis The Foshay and Le Meridien Chambers.

    Matthew doesnt plan to slow down anytime soon either. He continues to carve out the path he set for himself and push his boundaries with hopes of becoming a General Manager within five years.

    This award is new this year

  • Small Property of the Year

    University InnThe University Inn is one of the most in-demand hotels near the University of Minnesota campus. According to Trip Advisor, it is currently the 11th best hotel in Minneapolis, but it has fought hard over the years to earn that position. As the name suggests, the University Inn has always been associated with the University of Minnesota. Built in 1959 as the Gopher Campus Motor Lodge, it gained notoriety throughout the years for the fiberglass Goldy Gopher statue that was displayed outside the main entrance. The hotel was a mainstay for visiting professors, students and their families throughout the decades, but it was forced to close in 1999.

    The hotel remained empty for almost 10 years until it was purchased in 2008 and underwent a major renovation. The owners decided to market the hotel as an extended-stay only property and so while it had a great new aesthetic, it was still limited in its popularity. In 2013, it was purchased by its current owners, with Joe McCurdy as the new General Manager, and became the University Inn that it is today.

    The 45-room hotel now features overnight rooms and extended-stay rooms with kitchenettes to accommodate all guests. While it is primarily used as a place to call home for those who are visiting campus, the property draws a crowd of all ages as a boutique hotel with free parking and easy access to downtown Minneapolis and its wide array of fine dining. The hotel also attracts a varied crowd due to its personalized guest service and great advice on neighborhood attractions such as the TCF Stadium and Varsity Theatre. As a nod to its roots as well as its ongoing association with the University of Minnesota, the lobby now showcases the original fiberglass Goldy Gopher statue.

    Past Recipients:BEST WESTERN PREMIER The Lodge on

    Lake Detroit (2015) Czech Inn, Hayward (2014)South Pier Inn, Duluth (2013)Afton House Inn, Afton (2012)Water Street Inn, Stillwater (2011)Lokens Sawmill Inn & Suites,

    Houston (2010)AmericInn Lodge & Suites,

    North Branch (2009)Waller House Inn, Little Falls (2008)AmericInn, Mt. Iron (2007)AmericInn, Madelia (2006)

  • Large Property of the YearBEST WESTERN PREMIER Nicollet InnThe BEST WESTERN PREMIER Nicollet Inn in Burnsville sets a high standard for other hotels in the area. As part of Best Western Hotel and Resorts, the biggest hotel family in the world, management understands its clients are looking for a hotel full of perks.

    Since its renovation in 2011, the 131-room hotel has cultivated an upscale aesthetic and excellent customer service that translates into high listings on numerous tourism websites. The BEST WESTERN PREMIER Nicollet Inn is currently the fifth highest rated hotel out of 240 hotels in the metro area and the eleventh highest rated hotel in Minnesota by Trip Advisor.

    The propertys high ratings are due to knowing what guests are looking for in a hotel. Its location is perfect for those arriving to the Cities looking to shop at the Mall of America or spend the day at Valleyfair or the Renaissance Festival. The hotel also tempts guests to return after a day of exploring attractions with its exclusive executive level, indoor pool and hot tub and award-winning restaurant.

    Morgans Farm to Table Restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, first opened in 2010, but the restaurant was re-branded with a farm-to-table focus in 2014. The rebranding was a success and the restaurant collected a bevy of awards. Morgans Restaurant