Southern Hospitality in Louisville

Last week I was a guest at the GE Monogram Experience Center in Louisville, Kentucky. Product manufacturers have come to realize the power of social media and have begun including bloggers such as myself in their training seminars. Mind you, I am also a professional designer and am likely to be interested in the type of products they produce and will be inclined to specify them if I know about them. GE Monogram provides these seminars weekly throughout the year to those who are primarily appliance dealers, developers and contractors. A couple of weeks a year, they have seminars geared toward architects and designers –those who are likely to specify but not necessarily sell appliances directly. This past week was one of those weeks. I opted to attend the fall session because it was after the new product roll-out for the coming year.

This particular blog entry however is intended to share my Louisville experience. GE Monogram folks were the epitome of hospitality and allowed me to participate in an adventure far more extensive than I could have anticipated. I will followup with a blog later on this week telling you about the wonderful appliances I learned about (and am now completely enamored with and coveting). No problem promoting GE Monogram here! But first let me tell you about my Louisville experience:

Nancy Pollock, Concierge for the Monogram Experience Center, is absolutely phenomenal. She coordinates the agenda, travel and lodging provided by GE to seminar participants from all around the country –day in and day out. Our group was a smallish (compared to the usual) of about 15.  Saying she does a fabulous job is an understatement. I can never begin to express my gratitde or the appreciation she deserves for making everything flow so smoothly from my travel arrangements, the accommodations at the 21c boutique hotel and art gallery, the Monogram Experience Center –and finally making sure I didn’t have a bored or wasted moment when the planned activites ended on the last day several hours before my departing flight was scheduled. She really had a way of making each of us feel appreciated for the time we spent with GE Monogram in Louisville.

“21c has been voted #1 Hotel in the U.S. and #6 in the World in the Condé Nast Traveler Reader’s Choice Awards 2009 AND 2010.” Here is some of the art that was on display while I stayed at 21c:

 

This is the room that I had all to myself!

Notice the red penguins. There were 4-foot models of these all over the place. They stood as guardians on parade along the roof outside. They had a habit of showing up in some odd places. You never knew when one would be standing just outside your door. Some guests might even find one resting in their bed when they returned to their room at night! Creepy!
21c has famous (infamous?) restrooms: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bq8hk-IPWJs&feature=fvw and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsVap8Irclo&feature=related.  (These are the public restrooms not the ones in the suites.) The award-winning restaurant at 21C is Proof (referring to the local bourbon distilleries of course –there ware six of them nearby) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEWMYahdE8o&feature=related.  We had dinner there the first night and it was incredible.
Aside from the GE Monogram Experience Center Events, she arranged other activities as well such as first-time-ever visit for the design group to the Louisville Arts and Crafts Museum and Gallery that is right across the street from 21c.

These are the hand-forged iron pulls that were on the main entry doors. There were many beautiful examples of ironwork at the gallery.

I purchased some beautiful blown glass earrings with the gift certificate that was bestowed upon me.  Each of the participants received a gift certificate to spend at the museum.  We were designers after all and we DO love to shop!

Central to the MEC (Monogram Experience Center) is a cooking theatre that is a lab with several kitchens stocked with the superstars of the Monogram collection of cooking and cleaning appliances. Our “culinary trainers” were Chefs Joe Castro and Brian Logsdon.  Both were not only wonderful chefs but just delightful people to get to know.  I’m so happy they have a blog that has several of their webinars posted on there that really give you a sense of the experience I had cooking along with them at the MEC. http://www.monogram.com/all-in-good-food/

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