Tired of overcrowded airline waiting areas? Can't find a phone because a grandma just has to say good-bye for the 37th time? Try Continental Airlines' new President's Club at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.
The 10,000-square-foot, $5 million facility stands as the crown jewel of recent airport renovations.
Completed in May, Continental's club is a place to escape the traffic and noise usually associated with the airport, says Patrick Martin, Continental's Cleveland marketing manager. "If you do travel a lot, it's worth it," Martin says. A one-year membership costs $200. "Would you rather sit out in the concourse or in a place where you can get away from all the loud noises?"
With three conference rooms and more than 20 phone cubicles-complete with laptop connections-the President's Club is also designed for impromptu airport business meetings.
Imagine, Martin says, meeting out-of-town clients at the airport. Normally, you'd bring them back to the offices for a short business meeting and then return them to Hopkins the same day to catch their flight. "Instead, the meeting can be held at the President's Club," Martin says. Then, the client can hop back on a flight without worrying whether he'll be stuck in rush-hour traffic and miss the plane.
The new club was built as an addition to the airport and replaces Continental's old President's Club-which Martin says is being turned into "two or three new gates." It's part of Continental's expansion at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport from 19 gates to 40.
SBN reporter earns an Emmy
Small Business News Senior Editor John Ettorre received a Cleveland Regional Emmy award for his work on "Second to None-The Larry Doby Story," at the 29th annual competition held last month.
Ettorre worked on the project, which won in the Best Cultural Affairs category, as a writer for Classic Teleproductions Inc. The program, which aired on WVIZ in July 1997, was nominated for six awards and received two other awards in technical categories.
The program is now slated for national distribution. Classic Teleproductions has been hired by WJW TV-8 to produce a show on the 1948 World Champion Cleveland Indians to air next month.
Ups and Downs
NFL owners are out pricing corporate jets in anticipation of the windfall they'll get at the end of this month after anointing a new owner for the Browns. Each prospect has deep enough pockets to bankroll the new team. But who's got "Ups & Downs" on their side? Here's our special Browns' Preview edition:
Down to Al Lerner. The MBNA boss and former Modell pal probably owns the rights to a Browns Visa card, but he's as appealing as the tarmac in Baltimore.
Ups to Thomas Murdough. The Step 2 Co. CEO wants the team for all the right reasons. As if the owners could care less.
Downs to Dick Jacobs. It's hard to argue with the Tribe owner's recent record, but wouldn't it be nice if somebody else gets a chance to play?
Downs to Calvin Hill and Paul Warfield. Ex-Browns and local icons, yes. But New Yorker Howard Milstein, the real money behind them, owns half of the NY Islanders. There's a win-loss record to leave off the resume.
Ups to Larry and Charles Dolan, and another up tick for The Cos-even if he is just aboard for show. The Cablevision connection is everything the NFL could want. Can pay-per-view be far behind? Like 'em or not, get used to them; they're gonna get the team.
Ups to managed bids. It's unfair, mean-spirited and a lousy way to greet the newest member of your club. But we can't help enjoying the show.
Ups to U.S. Airways for bringing back its Cleveland-Baltimore flight to compete with Southwest Airlines. Even if it is a year early.
Downs to Bart Wolstein. Maybe he should have been the developer of the stadium. But his main experience to occupy it consists of folding The Force, the only profitable soccer team in its league.
Ups to Don Shula, Johnny-Come-Lately No. 1. The right guy for any job on the strongest team. But what's with the late entry? He's been out of the game as long as Cleveland has.
Downs to Alan Spitzer, Johnny-Come-Lately No. 2. An uninspiring addition to the least inspiring team. But with casino gambling unlikely in Ohio, this may be his best chance to print money.
Ups to Bernie Kosar, Johnny-On-Again-Off-Again. While he's everybody's local favorite, it's time to finally choose sides. We're betting he'll be the two-point conversion the Dolans need to clinch.