Planet Fitness at 13031 Wisteria Dr in Germantown has recently begun renovations to the location. Part of the renovations include expanding next door into the former site of Eye to Eye, which relocated to 19520 Waters Rd in Germantown over a year ago. In addition to more gym space, the location will also be upgrading it’s Black Card spa area. We’re told the construction is scheduled to last 11 weeks and the gym will remain open during this time.

In July we let you know that Planet Fitness will be opening a new location at 5520 Randolph Rd in Rockville (Montrose Shopping Center) in the space that was formerly occupied by Gold’s Gym. Though an opening date has not yet been set, we were told today that the current Rockville location at 1776 E Jefferson St in Federal Plaza will close when the new location opens. The new location is currently under construction.


Silver Branch Brewing Co. (8401 Colesville Rd #150, Silver Spring) announced today that they will be merging with Old Ox Brewery (Ashburn & Middleburg, VA) to form one company.

According to a press release, both breweries will maintain their individual brands and tasting rooms.

Full details below:

SILVER SPRING, MD and Ashburn, VA (April 11, 2022) – Silver Branch Brewing Company and Old Ox Brewery will join forces to create one cohesive company that combines Old Ox’s brand recognition, distribution expertise, and brewing capacity with Silver Branch’s hospitality background, marketing experience, and quickly growing portfolio of beers.

The combined company will be well positioned to take advantage of new opportunities emerging in the craft beverage industry while continuing to grow the Silver Branch and Old Ox brands. “This merger affords us some very exciting opportunities for growth,” says Chris Burns, Founder of Old Ox Brewery. “We have amazing plans in store for our tasting rooms, distribution portfolios, and new product launches. We can’t wait to share them with our customers. It’s going to be a lot of work, but it’s also going to be a lot of fun!”

Each brewery will maintain their unique identities while seeking opportunities to cross-promote and bring new beer experiences to craft beer lovers in Virginia, Maryland and Washington, DC. Silver Branch delivers traditional European-style beers in its Downtown Silver Spring tasting room, and Old Ox maintains a core competency in American craft styles that enjoys broad regional distribution.

“While our brewing styles are distinct, our philosophies are extremely well aligned,” says Christian Layke, Co-Founder of Silver Branch Brewing, “We both see beer as being as much about culture and the experience as it is about the liquid itself.”

“This strategic partnership will enable the combined company to achieve efficiencies, continue growing at an accelerated rate, and leverage diversified expertise,” says Brett Robison, Co-Founder of Silver Branch Brewing. “The merger will allow both breweries to continue producing their well-known beers in addition to many new innovative beers. Beer fans in Maryland, Virginia, and DC will also have more opportunities to participate in cultural celebrations and beer release parties in Silver Spring and Ashburn. This year we get to throw two Oktoberfest parties, we’re really excited about that.”

Silver Branch Co-Founder Christian Layke will be Director of Brewing with Co-Founder Brett Robison as Director of Operations. Chris Burns, Co-Founder of Old Ox, will serve as Director of Sales.

So what’s next? Time for a beer! We’re working on a celebratory collaboration project for release in May. The beer is brewed, the label is designed, the release is being planned…We’re excited! More details soon, but rest assured there will be a party!

The proposed merger is subject to final negotiation and execution of an operating agreement. The intention is to be a fully combined and integrated company by Q3 2022.

About Silver Branch Brewing Company

Opened in 2019, Silver Branch celebrates the four major brewing cultures: Belgium, Britain and Ireland, Central Europe, and the Americas. The balanced, drinkable beer styles from these cultures form the core of their lineup, but they also brew more adventurous offerings from each of these cultures. For more information, please visit

About Old Ox Brewery

Old Ox has been brewing approachable, American-style ales and innovative brands since 2014. The family owned and operated brewery is committed to creating a sense of community in the tasting room and among our restaurant, grocery store and independent partners. For more information, visit


Rockville-based Emmes (401 N Washington Street), a global, full-service Clinical Research Organization (CRO) dedicated to supporting the advancement of public health and biopharmaceutical innovation, last week announced that it has acquired Casimir, a U.S.-based CRO. Casimir has experience in more than 20 rare diseases and has worked with regulators, sponsors and patients to develop outcome measures that capture the nuances of disease progression and treatment benefit.

Emmes Chief Executive Officer Dr. Christine Dingivan said, “This is the fourth acquisition for Emmes in just over a year, as we continue to add new biopharma clients and deepen our innovative research capabilities. The combination of Casimir and Emmes will further differentiate our global rare disease center of excellence, Orphan Reach™. We plan to continue and accelerate the groundbreaking work of Casimir in neurodegenerative and neuromuscular conditions with remote data capture and patient outcome standardization.”

Founded in 2016, Casimir is supporting 39 projects with 25 different clients. It is especially well known for its efforts in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) and the application of its proprietary Duchenne Video Assessment (DVA) tool that measures clinical outcomes via remote data capture. The DVA is actively being explored in a variety of other rare disease indications, as well as in other neurogenerative/neuromuscular diseases.

Rare disease research is a strategic priority for Emmes. The company established Orphan Reach™: Emmes’ Rare Disease Center to combine its expertise in biostatistics, data management and clinical research with Orphan Reach’s rare disease patient-centric focus. Now, with Casimir’s proprietary clinical outcomes technology, Emmes establishes itself as the industry-leading CRO in rare and orphan disease clinical research and drug development.

Casimir’s CEO and Co-Founder Christine McSherry said, “Emmes’ long history and passion to improve public health were instrumental in our decision to join this outstanding company. The size and reach of Emmes will give us an even greater ability to expand our current platform and outcomes development expertise to other neurodegenerative diseases and therapeutic areas.”

Rhonda Henry, President of Emmes’ BioPharma Group, noted, “The combination of Emmes and Casimir will provide our clients access to full-service protocol design, strategy and trial execution services, not only for rare diseases, such as DMD, but also for a variety of myopathies and neurological conditions.”

She added, “Casimir is known for its virtual clinical trials and remote assessments that minimize the burden on patients and caregivers. This is something that we will build upon in other Emmes studies, as our goal is to utilize more and more real-world evidence to improve data quality and information for doctors when treating their patients.”

According to Dr. Dingivan, “Another advantage of Casimir’s addition to our Emmes team is that its work with biopharma companies, patient advocacy groups, regulators, and non-profits to design and validate its tools, like video assessments, has broader application to rare disease studies for Emmes’ public sector clients, such as the National Institutes of Health.”

About Casimir
Headquartered in Plymouth, Massachusetts and founded in 2016, Casimir’s CRO services begin with the patient’s perspective, as the company takes new approaches to its clinical studies that help build a better understanding of rare disease progression and treatment. It prioritizes virtual trials and remote assessments, focuses on qualitative research that centers on the patient experience, and captures the real-world impact of treatment interventions on patient quality-of-life through smart outcome measures.

About Emmes
Founded in 1977, Emmes is a global, full-service Clinical Research Organization dedicated to excellence in supporting the advancement of public health and biopharmaceutical innovation. The company’s clients include numerous agencies and institutes of the U.S. federal government and a wide range of biotechnology, pharmaceutical and medical device companies throughout the world. To learn more about how our research is making a positive impact on human health, go to the Emmes website at

About the Transaction
Goodwin Procter served as legal counsel for Emmes. Covington Associates acted as exclusive financial advisor and Buckingham acted as legal advisor for Casimir.


Reports Promising Early Data from Lead Clinical Program, JK07, for the Treatment of Heart Failure with Reduced Ejection Fraction 

Initiates Enrollment in Second Cohort of JK07 Phase 1 Dose Escalation Study

SalubrisBio is a clinical-stage biotechnology company dedicated to discovering and developing complex biologics for cardiovascular, oncology, and neurodegenerative diseases. SalubrisBio was founded in August 2016 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the China-based pharmaceutical company Shenzhen Salubris Pharmaceuticals Co. Ltd. Headquartered in Gaithersburg, SalubrisBio reflects Shenzhen Salubris Pharmaceuticals’ commitment to innovation and expansion into the global market and retains the core philosophy of developing therapeutics for large patient populations with significant unmet needs.

Salubris Biotherapeutics, Inc. (SalubrisBio), a clinical-stage biotechnology company dedicated to discovering and developing novel complex biologic therapeutics, today announced it received $32 million in financing from China-based Shenzhen Salubris Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. The investment, which was completed in the fourth quarter of 2021, will be used to advance the current pipeline, including continuation of an ongoing Phase 1b clinical trial and initiation of two additional Phase 1b clinical trials in 2022, and to further expand the pipeline through R&D.

“SalubrisBio is poised for a transformational year and I’m excited about the remarkable opportunities that lie ahead for us,” said Sam Murphy, Chief Executive Officer of SalubrisBio. “We are focused on advancing our programs and securing additional funding to progress the development of our portfolio of antibody fusion proteins and other complex biologics.”

Since its inception, SalubrisBio has built a drug discovery and development platform to address significant unmet medical needs in cardiovascular diseases, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. The company has multiple assets in clinical/preclinical development and additional programs at the discovery stage. SalubrisBio’s lead asset, JK07, is an antibody-based NRG-1 fusion protein currently in Phase 1 trials to assess safety and tolerability and to explore activity in subjects with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction [HFrEF]. JK07 is the first bi-specific antibody globally to enter a clinical trial in a cardiovascular indication.

Results from Cohort 1 (n=5) of the ongoing randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, dose-escalation study demonstrate a favorable safety profile and promising signals of clinical benefit with JK07 over placebo, with observed maximum improvement in ejection fraction of up to 18% absolute over baseline (>50% relative improvement). Enrollment of Cohort 2 is ongoing and SalubrisBio plans to report additional data from this HFrEF trial at future medical meetings. In addition, the FDA has agreed on the initiation of a Phase 1 study of JK07 in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction [HFpEF], preparations for which are now underway.

“Heart failure patients experience a high burden of symptoms, and mortality remains high despite approved therapies,” said Dr. Wilson Tang, lead investigator and Research Director for the Section of Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplant Medicine at Cleveland Clinic. “The Cohort 1 data are positive and support the biological rationale for JK07. We are ​encouraged by JK07’s potential to address unmet needs in heart failure with reduced ejection fraction and look forward to better understanding its full potential in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction as well.”

JK07 HFrEF Phase 1 Study Design

The ongoing Phase 1 trial is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, dose escalation study with five dose levels planned to assess the safety, tolerability, immunogenicity, pharmacokinetics, and exploratory efficacy of JK07 in subjects 18 to 80 years of age with HFrEF ≤40%. The size of the cohorts will range from five to nine subjects. Each cohort includes a single active unblinded sentinel subject receiving a single IV dose of JK07 prior to randomized single-dose administration of JK07 or placebo [3:1] in the remainder of the cohort.

For more information on the JK07 clinical trial, please visit

About Heart Failure

Heart failure affects an estimated 6.2 million Americans1 and more than 64 million people worldwide2. HFrEF and HFpEF each affect over 3 million patients in the US alone. Heart failure is a chronic condition in which patients experience progressively worsening symptoms and quality of life, hospitalizations and death. In HFrEF, the left ventricle loses its ability to contract normally, and the heart cannot pump with sufficient force to push enough blood into circulation. In HFpEF the heart becomes stiff and loses its ability to function properly. JK07 is in development for the treatment of both HFrEF and HFpEF.

About JK07

JK07 is a recombinant fusion protein consisting of a fully human immunoglobulin G1 monoclonal antibody and an active polypeptide fragment of the human growth factor neuregulin [NRG-1]. NRG-1 is a clinically validated growth factor which has shown promising activity in HFrEF but also undesirable side effects. Research has shown that NRG-1 induces signaling through interaction with two different receptors – HER3 and HER4. The HER4 pathway appears to be responsible for the regenerative effects in the heart, while the HER3 pathway appears primarily responsible for safety and tolerability limitations of recombinant NRG-1. By blocking HER3 signaling with an antibody fusion design, JK07 selectively stimulates the HER4 pathway with a favorable pharmacokinetic profile, which has the potential to significantly widen the therapeutic window of NRG-1 and yield better clinical effects.



The leading geospatial intelligence software company joins the ranks of Canva, Microsoft, SpaceX, and more.

Edgybees, the global leader in geo-registration software that’s headquartered on Washingtonian Blvd in Gaithersburg, has been named to Fast Company‘s prestigious annual list of the World’s Most Innovative Companies for 2022. This year’s list honors businesses that are making the biggest impact on their industries and culture as a whole—ultimately thriving in today’s ever-changing world. These companies are creating the future today with some of the most inspiring accomplishments of the 21st century. In addition to the World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies, 528 organizations are recognized across 52 categories.

Edgybees delivers geospatial context, corrected navigation, and accurate positioning to full motion aerial video and satellite imagery by harnessing advanced computer vision and machine learning technology. Its software supports many applications – including defense and intelligence, emergency response, as well as commercial sectors – and helps industry professionals make critical decisions with unprecedented speed and accuracy. Edgybees’ AI software improves the accuracy of drone video and satellite imagery to within two pixels.

Fast Company is recognizing Edgybees’ achievements in the public safety sector, specifically its application for wildfires and other natural disasters, ranking the company third in the Current Events category. Firefighters used the company’s technology to understand the severity of wildfires and mobilized resources and manpower in a timely manner. Building on these efforts, Edgybees is leading the charge to integrate its life-saving technology into other government sectors that depend on aerial and satellite imagery.

“The Edgybees team is honored to be named to Fast Company‘s 50 Most Innovative Companies list,” said Adam Kaplan, CEO and Co-Founder of Edgybees. “In a dynamic world where unexpected challenges lie around every corner, the ability to provide professionals with accurate and actionable insights has never been more essential. We are proud to be recognized for our work helping emergency responders, which has provided the foundation for supporting other critical drone missions.”

Over the past 18 months, Edgybees has seen tremendous company growth and increasing demand for its innovative solution: In February 2021, Edgybees announced a $9.5 million Series A Funding round to drive product innovation, expand global adoption, and support an aggressive hiring strategy. In April 2021, the company announced a collaboration with Hood Tech Aero, a premier provider of air-borne imaging and related services, to enhance situational awareness for firefighters using the powerful combination of Edgybees’ software and Hood Tech Aero’s state-of-the-art sensors. In July 2021, Carbyne announced a partnership with Edgybees to improve disaster response by bringing video imagery to 911 call centers and first responders in real-time through drone footage.

Fast Company‘s editors and writers sought out the most groundbreaking businesses across the globe and industries. They also judged nominations received through their application process. The World’s Most Innovative Companies is Fast Company‘s signature franchise and one of its most highly anticipated editorial efforts of the year. It provides both a snapshot and a road map for the future of innovation across the most dynamic sectors of the economy.

“The world’s most innovative companies play an essential role in addressing the most pressing issues facing society, whether they’re fighting climate change by spurring decarbonization efforts, ameliorating the strain on supply chains, or helping us reconnect with one another over shared passions,” said Fast Company Deputy Editor David Lidsky.

For the second year in a row, to coincide with the issue launch, Fast Company will host its Most Innovative Companies Summit on April 26–27. The virtual, multiday summit celebrates the Most Innovative Companies in business, and provides an early look at major business trends and an inside look at what it takes to innovate in 2022. Fast Company‘s Most Innovative Companies issue (March/April 2022) is available online here, as well as in-app form via iTunes, and on newsstands beginning March 15. The hashtag is #FCMostInnovative.

About Edgybees

Founded in 2017, Edgybees brings clarity, accuracy, and speed to mission-critical and lifesaving operations that rely on imagery for situational awareness. Edgybees’ solution combines advanced computer vision and machine learning technologies to accurately match aerial video and satellite imagery to reference imagery in real-time. This unique approach enables rapid decision-making by visually augmenting roads, key landmarks, and other mission-critical data – via Edgybees’ own platform or by integrating with third-party virtual augmentation solutions. With high-precision geo-tagging and near-zero latency, Edgybees makes complex operational environments instantly clear – enabling defense, public safety, and critical infrastructure teams to accomplish lifesaving and high-urgency missions quickly and safely. For more information visit


Perseus TDC announces it has acquired a five-story, 65,000-square-foot office building at 4405 East-West Highway in Bethesda, Maryland with plans to redevelop the site as a 10-story multifamily community with more than 300 units. Entitlement and design is underway, and construction is expected to begin in 2024.

“Perseus TDC is focused on developing highly-amenitized multifamily communities in premier D.C. metro locations, creating value for our investors and improving the community for all residents,” said Adam Peters, Regional Partner at Perseus TDC. “Our commitment to building the best product for all price points drives our design approach and strategy.”

With 8,000 square feet of planned retail and high-end amenities, the property is near major employment hubs, such as Marriott’s new corporate headquarters, the National Institutes of Health, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and the booming I-270 life sciences corridor. Bethesda Row and Woodmont Triangle, offering more than 1 million square feet of entertainment, restaurants and grocery stores, are within blocks. The Red Line and the under-construction Purple Line, just two blocks from the site, offer connectivity throughout the region.

“Our team capitalized on the opportunity to acquire one of the few remaining parcels in downtown Bethesda,” said Nihar Shah, Vice President of Development at Perseus TDC. “Maintaining trust and fostering relationships between our partners and other key stakeholders is critical to how Perseus operates. By leveraging our placemaking expertise, we will expand Bethesda’s core submarket east of Wisconsin Avenue and deliver the first new ground-up multifamily development in a supply-constrained region. The project will be in conformance with the Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan and a percentage of the units will be allocated to Montgomery County’s Moderately Priced Dwelling Unit Program.”

According to Transwestern’s research affiliate, Delta Associates, Class A apartment absorption in the Washington Metro was 16,310 units in 2021, helping to push vacancy down to 3.4% at year end.

Perseus TDC purchased the property from Klinedinst Management, who has been retained as the property manager while the project undergoes entitlement and design.

Ogden CAP Properties and Sandy Spring Bank served as the capital partner and lender, respectively. The project team includes SK+I Architecture and John Moriarty & Associates, the general contractor.

In December 2021, Perseus TDC announced the sale of The Foundry, an office-to-residential conversion near National Landing. Additional projects under construction include 15th and S, a 158-unit multifamily community and NoMaCNTR, a 500-unit mixed-use development accompanied by a 235-key hotel and approximately 40,000 square feet of retail. Both projects are in Washington, D.C. and are expected to deliver within the next two years.

About Perseus TDC

Perseus TDC, an affiliate of Transwestern Development Company, invests alongside its financial partners in well-located Washington, D.C., metro area properties, adding value through skilled entitlement planning, design, risk management and operations. The firm draws upon its principals’ expertise in developing office, hospitality, multifamily, retail and mixed-use real estate, refined through decades of experience. Based in Washington, D.C., Perseus TDC wields the capabilities of a national firm with the dexterity of a local developer. Visit for more information.

Courtesy of Transwestern


Sandy Spring Bank is a community bank headquartered in Olney, serving the Washington metropolitan area. It operates 55 branches and 6 financial centers. The local bank came in at #5 on the 13th annual ‘America’s Best Banks’ list by esteemed business magazine, Forbes.

Forbes’ 13th annual America’s Best Banks list looks at growth, credit quality and profitability to rank the 100 largest publicly-traded banks and thrifts. Sandy Spring Bank came in 5th nationally and was the highest ranking D.C. area bank.

Per the article, bank profitability is on the rise, with 96.8% of banks profitable, according to data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which insures or supervises more than 8,000 banks nationwide. This marks a new high water mark for this century after that number dipped as low as 69.2% in 2009.

Sandy Spring Bank was founded in 1868 by farmers who were Quakers. It was created for the farmers to pool their savings to make home loans to their neighbors.

Sandy Spring Bank History, per the bank:

The year was 1868. A group of local business and townspeople, 25 miles from the nation’s capital, were reeling from the deeply troubled economic conditions of the post Civil War era. An unprecedented number of new federal taxes had eroded the little savings they could manage.

Recovering from a long and costly war, the large banks in Washington and Baltimore seemed too cold, distant, and beholden to the federal government to bring a measure of financial security to their families. Something had to be done.

The answer would come from within the community and through the formation of a new bank; a bank that would serve the interests of all people in their community, staffed and managed by those who lived and worked in their community. It would serve the individual needs of each customer, one at a time, and through the dedicated efforts of its employees, make the community a better place to live. Over 150 years later, Sandy Spring Bank has not only survived, but has also thrived by living by those same principles.

Though our assets and presence throughout the Greater Washington region have grown, our associates still take pride in serving each and every client with consistently remarkable service, delivered with integrity. In fact, we have received numerous recognitions and awards over the course of our history, including most recently being named as a Top Workplace by The Washington Post and a Best-In-State Bank by Forbes. We continue to be at the forefront of technology in banking and provide state of the art money management and online banking services that rival those provided by the largest of banks.

Our commitment to making our community a better place to live, work, raise a family and run a business has never wavered. Through the shared effort of our employees, we give back to our community all year long. While we devote significant resources to nearly 300 non-profits across our footprint, our employees are encouraged to volunteer individually to their favorite cause.

Today, over a century and a half since we first opened our doors, we proudly serve as one of the oldest and largest independent financial institutions in the area. Yet we are still the alternative to the large, out of town banks, having never wavered from the guiding principles of our roots.


The Highly Anticipated 245-Room Hotel Features Inspired Spaces, Enriching Experiences, Three Food-and-Drink Concepts, Creative Meeting Spaces and Locally Influenced Design in the Heart of Bethesda, Maryland

Per Marriott:

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) today celebrated the opening of its 8,000th property – Marriott Bethesda Downtown at Marriott HQ, a 12-story stylish retreat adjacent to Marriott International’s soon-to-open new global headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland. The hotel opening signifies both a growth milestone for the company, as well as a remarkable moment in the Marriott story, as the company celebrates its 95th year. Marriott’s first lodging property, the Twin Bridges Marriott, opened in 1957 and was a four-story motor hotel in Arlington, Virginia.

“From the nine-seat root beer stand that my grandparents started nearly 95 years ago in downtown Washington, to the milestone opening of our 8,000thproperty, we have been fortunate to call this area our home,” said David Marriott, Director and incoming Chairman, Marriott International Board of Directors. “Marriott Bethesda Downtown at Marriott HQ reflects the continued transformation of the Marriott Hotels brand, and we are thrilled to embark on a new era of inspired travel and design with the opening of this hotel.”

Marriott Bethesda Downtown, part of the Marriott Hotels brand – the signature flag of Marriott Bonvoy’s 30 extraordinary brands – brings enriching, locally-influenced experiences to the global hospitality company’s home state. The hotel, owned by The Bernstein Companies and managed by Marriott International, is a gateway to the greater Washington, D.C. area and a destination in and of itself, featuring three innovative culinary concepts, including Bethesda’s first high-rise rooftop bar.

Exemplifying Marriott Hotels’ continued brand evolution, Marriott Bethesda Downtown sparks inspiration at every corner, with a modern, residential design and tailored solutions with locally-inspired accents. The hotel’s contemporary interiors illustrate a curated palette of materials inspired by the region’s natural attributes. Stone and tiles reminiscent of local Bethesda bluestone quarries greet guests at the hotel entrance leading to a grand staircase – the centerpiece of the glass-enclosed lobby brimming with natural light.

Faceted mirrors and floor-to-ceiling windows ripple throughout the hotel, infusing an abundance of natural light while also resembling reflections of the Potomac River.

Reimagined guest rooms and suites – with tailored, modern touches that inspire and nurture the needs of today’s traveler – feature multi-functional furniture, technology-enabled work surfaces with built-in universal adapters and UCS cords, and rose gold tinted mirrors. Hotel features include a spacious fitness center with Peloton bikes, a second-floor library highlighting local authors, and a curated art collection from the region’s emerging talent that is showcased throughout guest rooms and public spaces. A large-scale mural by multi-media artist Liz Collins, known globally for her abstract patterns, is an exclusively commissioned highlight.

Constructed to be LEED Gold certified with custom and sustainable design, the hotel features five expansive rooftop green spaces growing select ingredients for hotel menus and is designed to reduce pollution, save energy, and manage storm water.

Helmed by Executive Chef Dupree Braswell, Marriott Bethesda Downtown is home to three dynamic food-and-drink concepts, each with its own distinct identity, that showcase some of Maryland’s finest artisans and farmers through locally sourced ingredients and thoughtful collaborations with local makers. The Greatroom lobby bar, a social hub from day to night,features fluid bar seating that eliminates barriers between mixologist and guest. Indoor and outdoor spaces evoke the ambiance of an Italian Piazza, while cocktails are prepared tableside in a one-of-a-kind imperial shaker and a rotating selection of local craft beers are available on tap. The hotel’s restaurant, Seventh State, a historical nod to Maryland entering the union, offers a locally curated menu with items such as the Panuozzo, a wood-fired folded sandwich handmade with pizza dough and locally sourced ingredients. Floor-to-ceiling retractable glass walls open seasonally to outdoor seating, while a custom Italian wood-fire oven clad in bronze is a focal point of the open kitchen indoors. Hip Flask, Bethesda’s first high-rise rooftop bar with private elevator access, offers a spirits-forward menu with flair, innovative tableside presentations, and an expansive outdoor terrace. While zero-proof cocktails are also peppered throughout seasonally rotating menus, the signature “Tiger Vogue” cocktail with Makers 46, Tiger Nut, Chicory, and Orange 20, will be shaken and stirred into a flask then presented hidden inside of a book, speakeasy style.

A standard across Marriott Hotels globally, M Club – open 24/7 and located on the hotel’s ground floor – is an exclusive space reserved for hotel guests who are Marriott Bonvoy Elite and Club paying members. Perks include complimentary food and beverage throughout the day such as hot breakfast, evening hors d’oeuvres, and premium beverages, ensuring uninterrupted productivity for business travelers. In-room dining is also available seven days a week.

With nearly 8,000-square-feet of state-of-the-art pre-function and event space, including a private outdoor terrace overlooking downtown Bethesda, the hotel fosters connection for meetings, corporate retreats and social events. Floor-to-ceiling windows infuse an abundance of natural light while abstract design details such as cherry blossom light fixtures and watercolor carpet illustrate the region’s most prominent characteristics. Meeting rooms – innovatively designed to adapt to a variety of formats, group sizes and social events – are named after destinations significant to the company’s history, such as “Twin Bridges,” Chicago, Dallas and Atlanta. Customizable catering options feature locally inspired food and beverage breakouts and seasonal banquet items.

Marriott Bethesda Downtown is dedicated to ensuring every minute of the guest experience captures the essence of Bethesda, which means “House of Kindness,” through destination-inspired design, programming, partnerships and five-star service.

To celebrate the opening, the hotel’s “House of Kindness” offer* includes:

  • 15% off the best available rate; Marriott Bonvoy members get an additional 5% off
  • 20% off food and beverage
  • Upgrade to a top-floor view room

“Marriott Bethesda Downtown at Marriott HQ brings a fresh vision for hospitality to Bethesda’s burgeoning downtown district, with inspired spaces and locally crafted experiences,” said Katarina Burns, General Manager, Marriott Bethesda Downtown at Marriott HQ. “We look forward to creating meaningful connections with our guests and community while serving as a hub for business and leisure travelers.”

Marriott Bethesda Downtown will participate in Marriott Bonvoy – the award-winning travel program from Marriott International – allowing members to earn and redeem points for their stays at the new hotel, and at other hotels and resorts across Marriott Bonvoy’s extraordinary portfolio of brands. With the Marriott Bonvoy app, members enjoy a level of personalization and a contactless experience that allows them to travel with peace of mind.

Weekday rates start at $296; weekend rates start at $159. *Opening offer is based on availability and blackout dates may apply. Marriott Bethesda Downtown is located at 7707 Woodmont Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20814. For more information or to make a reservation, please visit or call (301) 820-6188.




Silver Spring’s United Therapeutics Corporation provided an update on Mr. David Bennett, the first UHeart™ recipient, stating that “The recent transplants of our xenoheart and xenokidney products demonstrate the tremendous potential of our business model for the second half of the 2020s and beyond. Indeed, Mr. David Bennett, Sr., the first UHeart™ recipient, continues to have strong cardiovascular function seven weeks after his transplant.”

The surgery took place at the University of Maryland Medical Centre (UMMC). It was a first of its kind transplant of a genetically modified pig heart that was successfully carried out in David Bennett, a 57-year-old man with terminal heart disease.

The patient had been deemed ineligible for a conventional heart transplant, leaving the experimental surgery as his only option. In addition to not qualifying to be put on the transplant list, Mr Bennett was also deemed ineligible for an artificial heart pump due to his arrhythmia.

Prior to the surgery, Mr Bennett said: “It was either die or do this transplant. I want to live. I know it’s a shot in the dark, but it’s my last choice.”

UMSOM, along with the University of Maryland Medical Center produced a videoof the historic xeno UHeart transplant surgery. Further information can be found at

The company also announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2021.Full year total revenues for United Therapeutics rose to $1,686 million, as U.S. patients being treated with the company’s treprostinil-based therapies reached an all-time high during the fourth quarter of 2021.

“Our commercial teams continue to perform with double-digit percentage growth in revenue and patient counts in 2021 compared to 2020,” said Michael Benkowitz, President and Chief Operating Officer of United Therapeutics. “Despite a setback with Tyvaso DPI, we remain on track to achieve 6,000 patients with Tyvaso by the end of 2022.”

“We continue to make strong progress with patient growth as we march toward our target of reaching 25,000 patients with our therapies by the end of 2025,” said Martine Rothblatt, Ph.D., Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of United Therapeutics.

The full press release can be seen here.


Germantown’s Hughes to deliver full suite of cloud-based network management solutions to help BurgerFi evolve fast-casual dining with technology and innovation

BurgerFi International, owner of one of the nation’s fastest-growing premium fast-casual and casual dining concepts through the BurgerFi brand, and the high quality, casual dining brand Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza & Wings (“Anthony’s”), selected Germantown’s Hughes Network Systems, LLC (HUGHES), an innovator in multi-transport technologies and networks, to upgrade, optimize and manage network infrastructure and digital signage. The move will support BurgerFi’s commitment to provide the best restaurant guest experience while continuing its aggressive expansion up the Eastern Seaboard.

“At BurgerFi, we are committed to adopting technology that enhances customer and employee experiences,” said Karl Goodhew, Chief Technology Officer at BurgerFi. “As we look to the future, our growth plan will be catalyzed by incorporating features and technologies like digital menu boards, in-car ordering and ghost kitchens, as well as on-site robots that support BurgerFi’s greatest asset – our dedicated employees.”

Hughes will build, manage and support the enterprise network for BurgerFi restaurants and ghost kitchens. Services under the agreement include primary and backup connectivity for every site, SD-WAN, LAN switches, network security, guest Wi-Fi, Voice over IP (VoIP), digital signage and more. Delivered as part of the HughesON™ portfolio of managed services capabilities, the network comes with 24/7 support, web-based portal management, and artificial intelligence for IT operations (AIOps) for optimal performance.

“We welcome the opportunity to support BurgerFi in their mission to evolve the fast-casual dining experience with a focus on technology and innovation,” said Dan Rasmussen, Senior Vice President, Enterprise Division at Hughes. “We consider ourselves a true partner in helping our customers achieve their business objectives: our expertise in solving BurgerFi’s networking challenges enables their leadership to focus on growing their business.”

For more information about HughesON managed network services for the hospitality industry, visit the Hughes website.

About Hughes Network Systems
Hughes Network Systems, LLC (HUGHES), an innovator in satellite and multi-transport technologies and networks for 50 years, provides broadband equipment and services; managed services featuring smart, software-defined networking; and end-to-end network operation for millions of consumers, businesses, governments and communities worldwide. The Hughes flagship Internet service, HughesNet®, connects more than 1.5 million subscribers across the Americas, and the Hughes JUPITER™ System powers Internet access for tens of millions more worldwide. Hughes supplies more than half the global satellite terminal market to leading satellite operators, in-flight service providers, mobile network operators and military customers. A managed network services provider, Hughes supports nearly 500,000 enterprise sites with its HughesON™ portfolio of wired and wireless solutions. Headquartered in Germantown, Maryland, USA, Hughes is owned by EchoStar. To learn more, visit or follow HughesConnects on Twitter and LinkedIn.


Industry Veteran Kyle Williams named VP of Commercial Business Development

RR.AI, the commercial division of Clarksburg-based Robotic Research, a global leader in autonomous driving technology, today announced the appointment of Kyle Williams as the company’s vice president of commercial business development. In this role, Kyle will execute the company’s commercial strategy by identifying new business opportunities, expanding the company’s client base, and building key strategic partnerships.

Back in December, the global leader in autonomous mobility and robotics solutions, announced a $228 million funding round—the first outside capital the company has raised.

“With his background in both engineering and strategic development, Kyle is a perfect fit to lead business development for our commercial division, RR.AI,” said Alberto Lacaze, president and CEO of Robotic Research. “Kyle has a deep understanding of the automotive and mobility landscape, and a long history of growing organizations in competitive markets. We are extremely happy to welcome him to the team!”

Bringing over 20 years of experience, including 17 years at Bosch, Williams has worked with industry leaders across the automotive and technology sectors. His leadership and experience span a broad range of international OEMs, suppliers, and AI technology providers.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the RR.AI team. Their expertise, dedication, and passion for advancing autonomous driving is unparalleled,” said Williams. “In addition to being an established autonomous technology company, Robotic Research continues to innovate and drive change across the industry. I look forward to being part of this team and working with these leaders to expand their commercial division, RR.AI.”

Williams graduated from the University of Michigan with both a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Electrical Engineering, later going on to earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Quantic School of Business and Technology. Williams also holds a number of automotive patents.

About RR.AI

RR.AI is the commercial division of Robotic Research––a global technology company that has delivered autonomy and robotics solutions for two decades. RR.AI’s vehicle-agnostic, full-stack autonomy kit (AutoDrive®) is a proven autonomous driving system for both on- and off-road environments and trusted by OEM partners. It is uniquely suited to provide a 360° autonomous (end to end) driving solution for commercial transportation that spans across complex operational design domains (ODDs). To learn more about RR.AI, visit


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