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MINNEAPOLIS-Graves Hospitality Corp., the locally based owner of the 255-room Le Méridien Minneapolis, is changing the hotel’s name to Graves 601 Hotel Minneapolis.

The luxury hotel, located at 601 First Ave. N in the heart of Downtown, will be the first to fly the Graves Hotels Resorts flag, a new brand being launched in the US. The hotel’s name change will take effect on Aug. 1.

The move comes two years after the $68-million hotel opened as part of Downtown Minneapolis’ Block E redevelopment project. The timing is not coincidental–at 24 months, the company had an escape clause with London-based Le Méridien.

Graves Hospitality, which owns and operates the hotel, has worked four years toward launching a brand of hotels emphasizing “sophisticated modern luxury,” says Benjamin Graves, president of the company and managing director of the Graves 601 Hotel Minneapolis. He emphasized that all other aspects of the hotel will remain the same.

As a newly independent hotel, the Graves 601 Hotel Minneapolis has linked up with Worldhotels, a player in the global hotel sales, marketing and distribution industry.Graves Hospitality, founded in 1979 as a real estate development and management company, developed AmericInn Lodging International and grew it to more than 40 properties in a decade before selling it in the early 1990s.

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