The Scene: The Marriott returns to its roots at 4,000th hotel’s grand opening in D.C.

Marriott International, Inc. on Tuesday celebrated the opening of the company’s 4000th hotel, the Marriott Marquis, in the town where it all started.

Marriott’s executive chairman, 82-year-old Bill Marriott, whose father J.W. Marriott founded the company with a root beer shop in 1927, was on hand  with about 200 guests, including D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and Democratic mayoral candidate Muriel Bowser, a council member. Those two stayed on opposite sides of the ceremonial ribbon.

Later at the reception the crowd voted on their favorite Moscow mule–the winning “virgin gin” will now be featured at the bar. Then, after being plied with plenty of cocktails, folks watched as aerial artists spun around the room.

The official dedication led by Bill Marriott along with Muriel Bowser and Mayor Vincent C. Gray. (Photo Courtesy of Marriott)
The official dedication led by Bill Marriott along with mayoral candidate Muriel Bowser and Mayor Vincent C. Gray. (Photo courtesy of Marriott) 
Artist Aniekan Udofia interprets “Traveling Brilliantly in Washington, DC” during the grand opening of the the Marriott Marquis. (Photo courtesy of Marriott)
Artist Aniekan Udofia interprets “Traveling Brilliantly in Washington, DC” during the grand opening of the the Marriott Marquis. (Photo courtesy of Marriott) 
Les Oiseaux Du Paradis performs during the grand opening of the the Marriott Marquis. (Photo courtesy of Marriott)
Les Oiseaux Du Paradis performs during the grand opening of the the Marriott Marquis. (Photo courtesy of Marriott)
Mrs. Donna Marriott, Bill Marriott, Norm Jenkins, president of Capstone Development, LLC, and Mayor Vincent Gray, share a symbolic root beer toast, a nod to the A&W Root Beer stand his parents opened in 1927. (Photo courtesy of Marriott) Pictured (L to R): Mrs. Donna Marriott, J.W. Marriott, Jr., Norm Jenkins, President, Capstone Development, LLC, Mayor Vincent C. Gray, District of Columbia
Donna Marriott, Bill Marriott, Norm Jenkins, president of Capstone Development, LLC, and Mayor Vincent Gray share a symbolic root beer toast, a nod to the A&W Root Beer stand his parents opened in 1927. (Photo courtesy of Marriott)

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Helena Andrews is the co-author of The Reliable Source. Follow her on Twitter @helena_andrews, and send your hot tips, sightings, and gossip to reliablesource@washpost.com.
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