By Shawn Chitnis
AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – The Gaylord Rockies resort is a little more than a month away from opening and will try to hire hundreds of future employees this weekend as it already has enough conventions booked over the next decade to block out the 1,501-room hotel for two years.
“It’s over a period of many years,” explained Rick Medwedeff, the general manager of the resort. “Everything from Fortune 500 companies, to smaller organizations, to associations.”
Earlier this month, the hotel near Denver International Airport revealed it already has 1.1 million bookings, and it isn’t set to open until Dec. 18. Construction and planning began years ago and staff have sold rooms to future conventions for several months. While the reservations could fill up the largest hotel in Colorado for 48 months, those bookings will occupy rooms over nine years beginning in 2019 and continuing through 2028.
“These are new visitors,” he said. “It will be something that will be the catalyst for a lot of growth.”
Those conference reservations for the hotel and convention center will welcome an estimated 6 million guests to Colorado. Several will gather in the state for the first time; 80 percent have never brought their events to the Denver metro area before.
The impact of the massive property covering 85 acres has already developed nearby. There are new hotels by the Gaylord Rockies or under construction. Neighboring hotels could continue to benefit from the guests this resort attracts to Colorado, since some will welcome as many as 5,000 attendees.
“We have groups that have already booked with us that are already greater than the size of our property,” said Medwedeff.
Local residents and individual guests looking to stay at the resort can now make reservations as well. This is the farthest west the group of resorts has ever built one of its hotels. Medwedeff says Colorado is in for a level of hospitality it has not seen before in the state.
“The brand itself is known for entertainment, it’s not just a hotel stay, it’s not just a food and beverage experience,” he said.
The career fair will take place Friday, Nov. 2 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Saturday, Nov. 3 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the property site located on 6700 North Gaylord Rockies Blvd. in Aurora.
The resort will need 1,400 employees to operate on a daily basis, hiring has already started with 600 positions, or “stars” as the company calls them, filled.