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Westin Peachtree Plaza to soon offer bike concierge service

June 23,2016

http://www.ajc.com/news/lifestyles/westin-hotel-in-atlanta-to-soon-offer-bike-concier/nrmGP/

For hotel guests who fret about getting enough exercise while traveling, the Westin Peachtree Plaza will soon launch a bike concierge service.

The initiative, called BikeWESTIN, will provide an early morning fitness alternative to the standard stationary bikes, treadmills and elliptical machines found in most exercise rooms.

Not only will guests get their sweat on, they will also see more of the city beyond the hotel lobby.

“This is a way to keep your mind and body in good shape when you travel,” said General Manager Ron Tarson. “We want people to feel better when they leave than when they came.”

Tarson is an avid cyclist.

He rides his bike 13 miles to work every day. Tarson thought, “Wouldn’t it be neat to take people on a ride?” He said, “Some of the best parts of my day are going to work and home.”

He can zoom past stalled traffic. He doesn’t have to worry about how to fit exercise into his daily routine.

When Tarson approached his staff about the bike program, he was amazed at the level of interest. Several asked to sign on as concierges.

The downtown Atlanta hotel has installed bike racks and a repair station on the premises. Currently, members of the team are getting trained in safety and certified.

The hotel also bought eight Trek bikes for cyclists. Riders must be at least 18 and sign a consent waiver.

Sites include Centennial Olympic Park, the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum and the Beltline.

If the program is a success in Atlanta, it could go systemwide.

Already Westin hotels has a robust fitness program for guests.

There are a runner’s concierge, exercise rooms and special guest rooms with exercise equipment, for an extra charge. There’s also a gear lending program in which guests can get workout clothes including shoes and socks. The shoes are replaced every year. Guests are allowed to keep the socks.

The hotel is partnering with Bicycle Tours of Atlanta, a 7-year-old business that offers leisurely tours through downtown and historic neighborhoods among other sites.

The program, which is expected to be available to guests in a few weeks, comes at an opportune time.

Atlanta has taken great strides to become a bicycle city.

The city has beefed up its bike lanes and bike share initiatives, and there are programs that encourage cycling.

“I think it’s fantastic,” said Robyn Elliott, owner of the tour company. She said the Westin could be “a real leader in the Atlanta market, and it will allow general managers at other hotels to take their blinders off and not be so afraid to take on something as exciting and progressive as this.”