Renovations at Ramada Inn in Janesville near completion

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Gazette staff
Sunday, June 15, 2014

JANESVILLE—Nearly a year after a Janesville hotel changed hands, its renovation is nearing completion.

Last July, America's Best Value Inn at 3900 Milton Ave. became a Ramada Inn.

The change marked the return of the Ramada brand to Janesville after a seven-year absence.

Ramada, which now is part of the Wyndham Hotel Group, flew its flag over another Janesville hotel for nearly 40 years before the property was demolished in 2006 to make way for a new Menards.

The property on which it now operates dates back nearly as long as the Ramada brand. The hotel opened in 1975 as the Midway Motor Lodge before becoming the Janesville Motor Lodge and then a Best Western.

PremierBank, an independent community bank with eight locations in Jefferson County, acquired the property last year and hired IDM Hospitality Management of Madison to run it.

“The reception area has been completely redone with a contemporary design aesthetic,” said General Manager Tammy Henderson. “It provides a terrific first impression for our guests.”

Henderson said all guest rooms and suites would be updated with all new linens, drapes, paint and beds.

New carpet and drapes have been installed in the meeting spaces, which can accommodate groups up to 400.

Completion of all renovations is on schedule for this summer, she said.

Other hotel amenities include complimentary hot breakfast, free Wi-Fi, fitness center, game room, heated indoor pool and a business center.

The property's former restaurant and bar, Alfresco Café and Lounge, has a new name and menu.

After a makeover, it will be known as Starters Bar & Grill.

The Ramada Inn also hired four new employees.

-- Jim Gunn was named chef. He previously served as sous chef at a Janesville catering and events firm. He holds a degree in business administration from Wartburg College in Iowa.

-- Kayla Bain joined the staff as outside sales and events manager with responsibilities for attracting banquets and events to the community and the hotel through outreach with businesses, non-profit groups and other organizations. Bain spent the last several years at HotelRED in Madison. She is a UW-Whitewater graduate.

-- Karl Anderson joined the sales team as coordinator and support. He previously worked as a sales and account manager with the “Destinations by Marriott” department of Marriott in San Antonio, Texas, where he was responsible for the planning and implementation of any function or event taking place outside the hotel property.

-- Daneen Soliday was named events coordinator. A longtime Janesville resident, she previously served in sales and marketing for a resort hotel in Lake Geneva. Before that she worked for a Chicago property management and real estate firm.

The Ramada has more than 100 rooms. In total, Janesville has about 750 hotel rooms.

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