JERSEY CITY, NJ – If you would have told me when I was a child growing up in New Jersey’s Hudson County that I would one day be interviewing the governor of New Jersey about Jersey City’s tourism potential, I would have just chalked it up with the Santa Claus, Tooth Fairy and “chocolates causes acne” lies. But here I am Monday at grand opening of The Westin Jersey City talking to Governor Jon S. Corzine, thinking that perhaps I’ll give up chocolate for Lent this year.
Travel Agent spoke to Corzine along with Senator Frank Lautenberg and other government officials during the ribbon-cutting ceremony of Jersey City’s latest major brand hotel. When I a was child, and even during a good chunk of teens, the Newport-area of Jersey City was nothing but a town full of bad mistakes from abandoned railroads to toxic sites or, to put it bluntly, a place you didn’t want your car to break down in late at night.
“It was basically a place that had been neglected for years,” Lautenberg told Travel Agent during a one-on-one interview. “But now that has all changed. This has become a very attractive area for tourists and business professionals.”
In fact, in less than a decade, Jersey City has added five “world class” hotels and an electricity-powered train connecting it to other major Hudson County cities, including the growingly popular Hoboken, which I like to call Jersey’s Manhattan.
“There’s no question that New Jersey and this city in particular have all the tools in place to compete with the New York (travel) market,” Corzine told Travel Agent.
The latest addition is the 429-room Westin, something that General Manager Mike McLaughlin says will attract not only business travelers but leisure clients as well. “This is primarily a business hotel but there is no reason why the leisure traveler shouldn’t want to stay here either,” McLaughlin said. “Its proximity to New York City makes this an attractive option for all kinds of vacationers.”
Specifically, the Westin is about a 10-minute ride to New York City. And the Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) train is located literally across the street from the hotel. There is no question that this is a cheaper option for travelers looking to visit New York or simply a great retreat from the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple.
The hotel is currently offering several deals to celebrate it's opening.