Here’s a brief intro for those who are newly following the Treadway road trip chronicles: For Sarah Treadway (President & Co-CEO of Magnolia Hotels), re-planning her family’s summer vacation a few months back was a no brainer. As the COVID-19 pandemic’s damaging effects on the hospitality industry became increasingly clear and the company furloughed hundreds of valuable team members, Sarah felt a deep desire to connect with & support the remaining few team members on property who are keeping our hotels safely open for business. Sarah & her husband, Shea, quickly hatched a major road trip plan: pack up their four children, their South African au pair, and enough supplies in a 32’ trailer for an eight-week trek across America to visit each of the six Magnolia Hotels!
After 3 weeks of venturing Southeast, the Treadways took a turn Northwest towards St. Louis! From New Orleans, they went camping at Cedars of Lebanon State Park, an amazing spot just outside of Nashville, Tennessee. It has an equestrian barn, nice & shady playgrounds for children, and every campsite is in the middle of a beautiful cedar trees forest.
The Magnolia St. Louis team & their GM, Matt Korsos, welcomed the Treadways upon arrival & gifted each kid a St. Louis Cardinals Build a Bear (the company is headquartered in STL) with their name embroidered on the jersey – Go Cards! The hotel is historic gem in the urban core of St. Louis. For business & family travelers (much like the Treadway crew – Sarah’s husband Shea is a frequent business traveler), the short walk a few blocks over to The Gateway Arch is great. Although rides to the top of the Arch are suspended for now, visitors can still enjoy the park and grounds surrounding it, the museum underneath, and admire the riverboats nearby. If you’re visiting the Arch this summer, go earlier in the morning – it gets hot fast!
The Treadways can’t go to a city without seeing the zoo and boy oh boy, they found the St. Louis Zoo very impressive! 5 Stars! First of all, the zoo is FREE. It boasts a variety exhibits, but the train ride and the sea lion show were highlights for Sarah’s family. To change it up, the Treadways also went out to the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House. This is an 8,000 square foot glass conservatory filled with 60 different butterfly species flying around freely. Everyone there is doing a great job of social distancing!
For Sarah, the highlight of the week was connecting with each team member over a meal. Due to schedule conflicts, she missed seeing Quincy, the team’s Executive Chef, but they did get to catch up over the phone. Unfortunately, Sarah couldn’t taste Quincy’s famous chicken wings over a call!
Next up: Magnolia Omaha.