HMSHost to Develop Maine Travel Plazas

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HMSHost to Develop Maine Travel Plazas

BETHESDA, Md. -- HMSHost Corp., operator and developer of more than 100 innovative travel plazas in the nation, will build and operate two new state-of-the-art travel plazas with food, beverage and retail offerings along the Maine Turnpike.

The facilities are a part of a contract extension from the Maine Turnpike Authority that was awarded in March 2006. Construction began last September on two facilities -- Kennebunk North and South Travel Plazas -- and are currently open to travelers and offerings Starbucks and an upscale c-store called Z Market. Construction on the remaining plazas will be completed within the month, according to the company.

"HMSHost understands the food, beverage and retail preferences of those who travel through Maine and has the industry expertise to develop a superior concession program," Paul E. Violette, Maine Turnpike Authority executive director, said in a written statement. "The construction of these new travel plazas also created local jobs in the process."

The Kennebunk North Travel Plaza is located at mile 25 in Kennebunk, Maine, and includes Starbucks Coffee, Hershey's Ice Cream featuring Tropicool Smoothies, Burger King and Popeyes Chicken. The Kennebunk South Travel Plaza, also located at mile 25, features similar vendors including pizza eatery Sbarro in place of Popeyes.

A Z Market upscale convenience store is in place at both locations. The stores offer consumers fresh, hot and cold gourmet food to go, along with convenience products, travel items and everyday essentials. Z Market stocks a deli case with Fresh Attractions sandwiches, sandwich wraps, salads and sides, all individually wrapped, fresh and transportable for consumption on the go.

Z Market also stocks items for road trip entertainment, including regional and national publications, bestseller novels, digital camera accessories and memory flash cards.

"Motorists are reacting very positively to the newly opened stores; they are especially excited about the Starbucks and Z Markets," said Michael Jones, vice president of business development for HMSHost. "Our customers are delighted, and we look forward to enhancing their travel experience."

The travel plazas were renovated and rebuilt with up-to-date designs to accommodate motorists' needs, including brighter, larger restrooms; food court environment with atrium seating; an outdoor patio; multiple entrances and exits, and increased parking for cars and trucks.