Alternative Hospitality to Open Cannabis Hotel in Coachella Valley
By Debbie Hall
Sproutways – April 30, 2019
Alternative Hospitality announced the development of its first health and wellness cannabis hotel to be built in Desert Hot Springs, California. The ground will be broken later in the year for the 150-room Coachill Inn Resort to be designed by architect David Wallace. The resort will feature an amphitheater for entertainment and a lazy-river pool to capitalize on the natural hot springs.
Alternative Hospitality is a division of MJ Holdings, a management and consulting company to the regulated cannabis industry. Hotel developer Roger Bloss has partnered with MJ and is the division’s acting CEO and president.
“The Coachill Inn Resort will attract travelers who are looking for an experience and the opportunity to safely experiment,” Bloss said. “People from all over the world come to the Coachella Valley for business, tourism, and the famed Coachella and Stagecoach music festivals. And now they can learn about the health and wellness benefits of hemp, CBD, and cannabis.”
Alternative Hospitality has planned seven more properties including three in Las Vegas, two in California, one in Michigan, and one in Oklahoma.
In Aspen, Colorado, Laurent Pillard, the executive chef of the St. Regis Aspen, is developing a gourmet CBD tasting menu to serve guests at the hotel’s upscale restaurant, Velvet Buck.
If St. Regis executives approve it, Pillard will be the first chef to offer CBD at a hotel whose brand is part of Marriott International. The company, known for conservative values, is also the world’s largest hotel company.
“Obviously there’s a [financial] upside because you can charge more for CBD. But the guests are really feeling more rejuvenated after using it in our spa, and we have groups asking for CBD menus for private dinners. It’s what our guests want,” said Heather Steenge-Hart, the general manager of the St. Regis Aspen. “We should go there because we want to be ahead of the trend. You can’t just keep doing the same ol’ same ol’.”
The St. Regis Aspen’s Remede Spa has been offering CBD products and massages since 2017. Spa Director Irisha Steele has reported a 37 percent increase in gross revenues.
According to Hotel Trend Report 2018 and Traveler’s Weekly, cannabis tourism is going mainstream. CBD-infused products are being offered and sold in the hospitality industry. Petit Ermitage hotel in West Hollywood, California, has hosted pop-up CBD dinners. The Calistoga Motor Lodge near Napa features a Brownies ‘n’ Bake spa and chocolate package with CBD-infused massage and food.
Hotel minibars offer CBD-infused products nationwide. Even in states that have not legalized cannabis either for medicinal or recreational use, exceptions are starting to be made in the hospitality industry in those states. Cannabis, medicinal and recreational, remains illegal in Texas and CBD only is allowed for the treatment of epilepsy. However, Hotel Havana in San Antonio, Texas, offers CBD sea salt caramels.
The James New York Nomad hotel features an industry first, a CBD tasting menu. Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef and author of Cannabis Cuisine Andrea Drummer created the menu items. James executives were impressed when Drummer prepared a meal using cannabis for Chelsea Handler starring in the Netflix series, Chelsea Does.
James LaRusso, senior director of communications for Denihan Hospitality, explained, “We knew we had to work with her to create an experience like this for [our guests]. Rather than grabbing your Xanax, we think it’s a great option to order those meatballs to your room for the same benefit.”
Minibars in the Standard Hotels are stocked with CBD-infused gummies made for the brand by Lord Jones.
However, while the hospitality industry continues to embrace CBD and cannabis, New York City’s Department of Health has recently ordered restaurants not to sell food or products containing CBD impacting the hospitality industry in that state.