Mohawk Harbor hotel hopes to be part of community

SCHENECTADY — The Courtyard by Marriott hotel at Mohawk Harbor is already accepting reservations and planning a mid-October opening.

Daily Gazette photographer Marc Schultz and I got the first look inside the 124-room hotel. Our tour guides were General Manager Jeff Michaelson and Director of Sales and Marketing Tom Gabriel.

They said rather than drawing people from the Rivers Casino and Resort at Mohawk Harbor on the other end of the site, the Marriott is looking to be part of the Schenectady community and will cater to business travelers and families.

“The goal with the Marriott is for markets like Schenectady — city and urban markets — to have the same feel and a level of comfort for travelers,” Gabriel said. “We’ll really be built around corporate travel.”

The hotel is located on the northern end of the site by Freemans Bridge Road. The main entrance faces Erie Boulevard and features an open lobby with interactive features like pods for check-in, small meeting spaces, and a lounge area with a television.

The amenities are not yet installed. The carpet, which is a white and plum color, is being put down now and the vinyl walls are going up. Some furniture sits covered with plastic, including a large bar that will serve coffee and breakfast by day and cocktails and dinner by night.

The bar and restaurant, called the Bistro, will serve fresh food made in-house. The hotel, like all Marriotts, will serve Starbucks coffee all day. Breakfast will be served in the morning and a light fare menu will be available for dinnertime, which will have quick bites like burgers.

The lobby will feature a “go board” — a 52-inch television that will serve as a virtual navigation tool. Guests can use it to find places to eat in the city along with events and attractions.

“It will have weather, places to eat, traffic, any events going on in the area,” Gabriel said. “All of that is loaded right into the go board where the guests can interact and figure everything out touch and go.”

Michaelson said the hotel has done a lot of research about the area to load the go board with as much local information as possible.

“The hotel was planned before the casino,” Gabriel said. “We want to become part of the Schenectady community. We’re here to cater to the guests of the casino and the leisure traveler, but we see ourselves as more and we want to embed ourselves in the community.”

There is a room off the lobby that will be used as meeting space. The 1,100-square-foot room, called the Harborview Room, can hold up to 100 people. It will have a television screen on one wall and large windows on another overlooking the Mohawk River that will provide natural light.

Story Credit: Viccaro, Haley. “Mohawk Harbor Hotel Hopes to Be Part of Community.” The Daily Gazette. N.p., 30 Aug. 2016. Web. 31 Aug. 2016. <>. Photo Credit: Chris Milian, Professional Aerial Photographer, ( 

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