A roundup of independent hotel news
A roundup of independent hotel news
21 JUNE 2017 12:08 PM

This month’s roundup of news from the independent hotel sector includes: Detroit’s latest boutique opening; Ian Schrager’s Public venture in NYC; and more. 

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Boutiques boom outside of downtown cores
Lower costs and fewer barriers to entry are making non-downtown market attractive to boutique and independent hotel owners, according to a recent article in The New York Times. The article cites a forthcoming Unscripted hotel, from Dream Hotel Group, coming to Durham, N.C., this summer, developed by local developers Jane and Greg Hills.

“We had been talking to all the major brands, but we wanted someone innovative, creative and entrepreneurial,” Jane Hills told the paper. “The banks wanted us to go with someone more well-known, but Dream was the right match for us.”

Drivers like technology and R&D, along with relatively lower prices and less competition, is making these secondary markets desirable, according to the article.

Schrager opens Public in New York City
Nightlife and hospitality legend Ian Schrager opened his latest venture in early June, Public New York, billed as a “hotel and arts center” disrupting the midmarket hotel space in Manhattan’s Lower East Side.

According to the Associated Press and as reported in The New York Times, Schrager’s goal for this new space is to invite the public in. The property features a green space out front, stadium-style seating that invites guests and locals to sit with coffee or a laptop and a music venue that can host live performances, movie screenings and more.

Schrager first ventured into the Public concept several years ago, opening a Public-branded hotel in Chicago with Morgan Stanley Real Estate Funds. They sold the hotel last year for $60 million to the U.S. unit of Hong Kong-based Gaw Capital Partners, according to Crain’s Chicago Business.

Detroit Foundation Hotel bellwether of new era
The Motor City’s boutique hotel boom marked a new opening, with the 100-room Detroit Foundation Hotel, which opened in the former Detroit Fire Department headquarters in late May. Aparium Hotel Group is owner, co-developer with Walter Cohen and manager of the $28-million independent hotel. The goal of the hotel is to partner with local food-and-beverage providers, farmers and other entrepreneurs to create “truly Detroit moments” throughout the hotel.

The hotel was designed by Detroit-based McIntosh Poris Associates and Simeone Deary Design Group. See the article in Detroit News for a slideshow of photos.

Deals and developments

  • The Goodwin Hotel in Hartford, Connecticut, reopened in early June following a decade of vacancy. The 124-room property is owned by RMS Companies and Greenwich Hospitality, and Jonathan Nehmer + Associates and HVS Design did the interior design.
  • Dana Orlando is the new GM of Hotel Ivy in Minneapolis. The 136-room Luxury Collection hotel is owned by Wischermann Partners.
  • Jim Mauer was named GM of the Mayfair Hotel & Spa in Coconut Grove, Florida.
  • Michael MacDonnell is the new F&B director at The Raleigh in Miami Beach, Florida. The hotel is owned by The Raleigh Group and managed by sbe.
  • The Art Hotel in Denver, Colorado, named Aaron Coburn as GM and Colin Bennett as director of sales and marketing. The hotel is managed by Commonwealth Hotels Collection and has been open for nearly two years.

Compiled by Stephanie Ricca.

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