Update – Emerald River Hotel Purchased

By  | November 7, 2012 | Filed under: News

Alkesh (“Al”) R. Patel

SHEFFIELD – Alkesh (“Al”) R. Patel, whose home is in Battleground, WA, now has an official affiliation with the Shoals area.  He is the new owner of the Emerald River Hotel in Sheffield. On a recent visit to the hotel and to the cities in which he will be doing business, Patel had nothing but glowing remarks to share about his plans, the hotel’s potential as a full-service, major franchise branded hotel, and about the staff that he has assembled to run it.






Phil Pezzuto, will over see renovation and re-branding of hotel.

Phil Pezzuto, who has over 40 years of experience in the lodging industry across the United States and Canada, has moved to the Shoals to serve Patel as general manager of the Emerald River Hotel.  Along with assistant manager Linda Kent, the team has over 65 collective years of experience in the industry. Continuing with the hotel is Kim Bates, as interim sales manager.

The hotel, built as a Holiday Inn, was considered the area’s premier convention hotel for many years. Patel is developing a plan to optimize its potential and return it to the area’s stable of offerings for full-service meetings and conventions.  Guest rooms have been redecorated during the most recent tenure of ownership and each offers guests a microwave and a refrigerator. Ground floor rooms provide the added convenience of both interior and exterior entrances, making this hotel popular with anglers and others who wish to have their vehicles within easy access. Hospitality suites are available with added amenities.  Area residents and former customers of the hotel will also recall the favorable footprint of the hotel, which includes a courtyard, outdoor pool, indoor Jacuzzi, business center and exercise room.

The next phase under Al Patel’s direction will encompass full renovation of the common areas, specifically the atrium-style lobby with its soaring ceiling, solid masonry walls and stunning, multi-level windows. According to Patel, the dining room, the lounge and the 350-seat banquet / meeting rooms will all be getting a new look and the kitchen will see a complete update.  Patel intends to make frequent visits to the Muscle Shoals area, as he oversees completion of these steps during the next few months.

In announcing his new ownership and the plans for the Emerald River, Al Patel says that the hotel is going to be a vital part of Sheffield and the entire region.  “I am looking forward to a long and happy relationship with my friends in the Shoals. We invite you to come and meet our management and sales team and to watch for the new developments as they happen.”

Patel is Chairman of The Asian-American Hotel Owners Associastion

Patel currently serves as chairman of the Asian-American Hotel Owners Association. In this leadership role, he serves the interest of the 11,000 membership and works with the American Hotel & Lodging Association on issues that affect the interests of hotels across the nation.









Present-day photo of Emerald river Hotel Lobby

Susann Hamlin, Executive Director of Colbert County Tourism, had this to say:  “We are pleased that a person of Al Patel’s caliber has chosen to invest in the Emerald River Hotel. This property, located in the very center of the Shoals, on a highway that draws our communities together, has always been prime.  Its well-planned layout and design function as well today for travelers as when the hotel was first built, a time when our area was coming into its own as a destination for groups, conventions and meetings. We are looking forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship with Mr. Patel and the staff of the Emerald River and we pledge our wholehearted support as they undergo this transition.”

Sheffield Mayor Ian Sanford, who recently met with hotel management, seconds that, adding that the City of Sheffield also stands ready to assist. “We offer them a hearty welcome to our towns.”



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