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Visitors Bureau

Posted on: March 20, 2019

Community Spotlight: Jessica Arenholz, Drury Inn & Suites


Having been at Drury in Merriam for 13 years now, would you consider this community your home away from home and why?
Absolutely! It's so vital to know the community inside and out so that we can direct our guests to the best restaurants and attractions while they are visiting our city. Not to mention, the people. Everyone from the Merriam Visitors Bureau, police department, and fire department make our community safe and take care of our guests, so that they are always in great hands while visiting Merriam.

You recently won another JD Power Award and the CTM Partner of the Year Award. What do you attribute to that success?
Our team! We hire our team based on attitude alone. We don’t expect our team to have worked in hotels before; we just expect them to be genuinely kind, caring, and empathetic. We can teach all the skills you need, but when you have team members who truly care about each individual guest, it makes their experience memorable and unique. This is what we do at Drury. We want to give memories. We want them to have an exceptional stay and remember our friendly team in Merriam! If you were to walk in our hotel, you would get a smile from everyone! That means our housekeepers, our maintenance gentleman, breakfast and kickback hosts, the front desk team, and, of course, the managers. We know it’s a great day when our guests are happy.

You work closely with the Visitors Bureau in welcoming groups, responding to leads, conducting site visits and sharing Merriam events with visitors. Describe that partnership!
My favorite part of working with the Visitors Bureau has been the kindness and the attention of detail that they provide our guests. They're extremely attentive and willing to do whatever it takes to ensure our guests have a perfect stay and they tell all of our guests to come to Merriam! There are always goodie bags available for tours and they even allow us to use the CVB parking lot when we need overflow. It is definitely a team effort and our hotel wouldn’t be near as successful without the Visitors Bureau.

Tell us about your family.
I’ve been married for 14 years to Matt, who I met in college at the University of Northern Iowa. We have a daughter, Aly, who is 12 and a son, Cody, who is 9. We also have two labs, Kacee and Lily.

Tell us something funny, interesting, or unique about yourself.
I love to travel and am a bit of a daredevil! I've been skydiving, bungee jumping, zip lining, and even a human roller coaster! My daughter is already begging to go skydiving, so I promised her we would go together on her 18th birthday.

What would an ideal visitor itinerary include for someone who’s never been to Merriam?
They would definitely need to stop by Strawberry Hill Povitica and IKEA!

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