Dec 1 2010 8:32AM from USATODAY.com
By Barbara De Lollis, USA TODAY
Marriott's SpringHill Suites chain today will launch "ArtNight," an arts initiative designed to give local artists visibility in hotels while exposing guests to the local arts scene.
Boutique hotels have cultivated an artsy reputation for years. But this initiative - to be launched in just two hotels - is another sign that big chains are willing to try something new to generate an artsy buzz and fight cookie-cutter perceptions.
Increasingly, large chains are striving to become hipper and offer guests the flavor of the community before they leave the hotel. Another Marriott chain - the upscale Renaissance - in October launched an official music program called "RLife Live" that plays up local, emerging artists in its hotels.
Even when chains don't have official programs in place, though, individual hotels in communities where emerging artists live sometimes take their own steps to incorporate the arts in some way.