Coming a couple of months after the Super Bowl, the official grand opening soiree of the Marriott Marquis Houston hotel boasted a cocktail reception, multi-course seated dinner, DJ-helmed party on the sixth-floor terrace overlooking the Texas-shaped lazy river swimming pool, and a spectacular fireworks display. (The hotel quietly opened in late December and revved up as the center of Super Bowl action for NFL owners and Commissioner Roger Goodell, but officials waited until things had quieted down a bit to celebrate its arrival.)
The action-packed evening went until late into the night, leaving the guests uber-impressed with downtown’s newest hotel.
Here’s a look inside the celebration.
Marriott International president and CEO Arne Sorenson came to Houston for the big celebration and was joined by RIDA Development Corporation president and CEO Ira Mitzner (his company developed the property), Houston Astros Hall of Famer Craig Biggio, and Marriott Marquis Houston general manager Scott Cotton.
The Parkview Terrace, perched 110 feet above street level, offers sweet views of downtown Houston.
Guests snap pics at the grand opening event.
A bartender shakes things up as guests look on.
iLuminate, named America’s Got Talent's "best new act in America” in 2011, provided glow-in-the-dark entertainment during dinner.
You can't go wrong with sushi and free-flowing champagne.
Partygoers wined and dined inside the Texas Ballroom, the largest ballroom in town at a colossal 40,000-square-foot with a capacity of 4,000.
Mayor Sylvester Turner helps to welcome the new hotel.
The icing on the grand opening party cake, a delicious dessert buffet was ready and waiting for guests as they hit the terrace after dinner.
It was a well-orchestrated evening, including popular and modern tunes performed by Amp'd String Quartet.
Cheers to the new Marriott Marquis Houston.
The 29-story Marriott Marquis Houston, located near Discovery Green, Minute Maid Ballpark, and the Toyota Center, features 1,000 swank guest rooms, 52 event rooms, and amazing views.
A Texas-shaped mosaic by artist Nathan Lindstrom displays Houston's storied past through Polaroid photos.
The hotel’s $10 million Parkview Terrace includes a Texas-shaped lazy river, an infinity pool and a poolside bar and grill. The river, 3.6 feet deep, flows with a mild current that floats you around the state in 15 minutes or less.