SOURCE: Marriott International

Marriott International

May 20, 2013 14:16 ET

Premier Augusta, GA Hotel Takes Eco-Friendly Cooking to the Next Level

The Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center Launches a One-of-a-Kind Program to Enhance Its Local and Organic Culinary Approach

AUGUSTA, GA--(Marketwired - May 20, 2013) -  When it comes to going green, there are many shades to choose from. You might opt for a LEED-designed building or organically grown food. You may insist on eating free-range meats or choose to support a business that integrates recycling into its daily operation. For the Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center, all that is just the beginning.

As part of its newly implemented In-House Crafted and Cured program, the Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center has gone beyond its on-site herb garden to can, pickle and cure its own fruits, vegetables, salsas and meats. Executive Chef Craig LaPonzina oversees the program, which he considers a natural next step for the hotel. After all, he has long partnered with local famers like Wade Plantation in Sylvania, GA and Red Maple Farms in Augusta to procure the freshest local and organic produce and meats available.

"Certainly this program is a point of distinction, quality and freshness that separates our culinary initiatives from those of our competitors," says LaPonzina.

Travelers to Augusta, GA can sample the fruits of this program in two ways: as part of a catered event in one of the hotel's numerous venues, or in Augustino's, an on-property Italian restaurant and steak house. Choosing what to try, however, might be more difficult since there is a bounty of items to tempt the palette. In-house crafted prosciutto, pancetta, various sausages and salamis are all on-hand, alongside pickles of every sort, from garlic-dill and icicles to hot and candied. Those who prefer sweeter items will enjoy the jams, jellies, preserves and marmalades, while homemade salsas and picante sauces heat things up. Rounding out the offerings are pickled veggies like okra, beets and giardiniera.

The In-House Crafted and Cured program is sure to appeal to all visitors, including business travelers. With 10 meeting rooms and 24 breakout rooms, Augusta, Georgia's favorite business hotel has managed to add a mouthwatering dash of pleasure to its already attractive conference-related amenities.

The Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center is not content to rest on its eco-friendly laurels. "This is just the beginning!" LaPonzina exclaims. As the regional leader in sourcing local products, LaPonzina foresees the In-House Crafted and Cured program adding more and more items to its lineup, making the decision to go green in Augusta, GA a very easy one for travelers.

About the Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center
With 11 floors, 349 rooms, 23 suites and 100,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, the Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center is poised to accommodate every personal and professional need of its visitors. Rooms marry efficiency -- think complimentary wireless high-speed internet and spacious desks -- and comfort with appointments like designer duvets and plush beds. Suites offer extra amenities such as refrigerators, microwaves, living rooms and flat-screen TVs. Coffee and tea service, along with cable TV, help turn each room into a home away from home, while a fitness center, seasonal outdoor pool and year-round indoor pool make it easy to stay active. But when it comes time to see the sights, this property is ideally positioned within a five-mile radius of three golf clubs. Other attractions include Gallery Row, the Morris Museum of Art, the Augusta Riverwalk, the Sacred Heart Cultural Center, Lake Thurmond and the childhood home of President Woodrow Wilson. Additionally, the Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center boasts a restaurant for every meal: Starbucks coffee counter for breakfast, featuring fresh-baked breakfast pastries; Quiznos for lunchtime sandwiches, soups and salads; and Augustino's for award-winning wines, steaks and Italian-style seafood.

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