D.C. United kicks Fairfield hotels up a notch

Pro soccer players kicking a ball around in a place where they shouldn't really be doing so? That's what we find in this amiable video created by Marriott's PR folks to promote its Fairfield Inn & Suites brand. (It kicks off, so to speak, an integrated campaign that agency mcgarrybowen has created around the brand's "Staying is believing" theme.) Ben Olsen and some D.C. United teammates seem to be having fun as they play an impromptu game in a Marriott lobby. The downside, of course, is that there's already a legendary commercial in which big-time soccer players kick a ball around in an unusual venue: the one featuring stars of the Brazilian national team at an airport, on behalf of Nike in 1998. A new video can't help but invite comparison with the earlier one. And with all due respect to Marriott's effort, which is perfectly pleasant, D.C. United against Brazil isn't much of a contest. But the new video does end with a nice flourish as it offers this disclaimer: "We are professional soccer players. Don't even think about trying this inside a Fairfield Inn & Suites." OK, consider it not done.

—Posted by Mark Dolliver