MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — With a simple snip of the ribbon, luxury and convenience landed at MSP International Airport on Monday.

After decades of discussion about the need for an airport hotel, doors have opened.

Sandwiched between airport runways and terminal traffic is the MSP InterContinental. The cubed glass facing of the hotel’s exterior represents 12 stories of luxurious accommodations to pamper the traveling public.

“This is definitely our flagship, locally,” said Ben Graves, president and CEO of Graves Hospitality.

Locally-owned Graves Hospitality will own and operate the hotel, described as European in its design and feel.

“Our guest rooms will range from, obviously, the travelers and those on layovers, but we will also have weddings booked here,” Graves said.

One might assume a hotel so close to busy airport runways would be noisy. However, that’s not the case. Guest rooms are extremely quiet thanks to the building’s design.

Jet noise is kept to a bare minimum with the use of triple-glazed windows. There is an air gap five inches wide between glass panes – meaning outside jet traffic is barely a whisper.

Additionally, the hotel boasts a 900-seat ballroom, luxury spa, corporate meeting rooms and a spacious front lobby. Minnesota-sourced building materials are widely used and blue lighting schemes are meant to compliment an abundance of water.

“This lobby is amazing with its 40-foot ceilings and custom artworks,” said Sally Ableitner, marketing director for the hotel. “We put a lot of thought and detail into the design.”

With luxury comes convenience — a TSA checkpoint allows guests to head directly into the “C” concourse with their carry-on luggage, and an airport skyway connects directly to the hotel’s third floor.

As for the general public, the InterContinental’s two restaurants and penthouse-level lounge provide a convenient place for anyone to wine and dine.

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