Hotel & Resort News

Richfield to purchase U.N. Plaza Hotel from NYC Richfield Hospitality Services Inc., Englewood, Colo., on behalf of its parent company, Regal Hotels International Inc., has signed a definitive agreement to purchase the United Nations Plaza Hotel -- Park Hyatt from the city of New York for $102 million. Located at First Avenue and 44th Street in Manhattan, the property occupies the upper floors of two of the three office towers in the United Nations Plaza complex. It has 427 guest rooms, including 45 luxury suites, and will be renamed the Regal U.N. Plaza Hotel.

$450 million expansion under way at Atlantis, Paradise Island Already the most expensive resort development project ever attempted in The Bahamas after a $250 million renovation in 1994, work is under way again at Sun International Hotels' Atlantis, Paradise Island Resort & Casino complex in Nassau, The Bahamas. This time the project is a $450 million expansion that will add 1,208 rooms and suites to the existing 1,147 rooms. Atlantis phase II, which is scheduled for completion at the end of 1998, will bring the complex to more than 1.4 million sq. ft., including a new 150,000 sq. ft. of public space and a new 50,000 sq. ft. casino. Financing for the project includes a $300 million credit line from Societe Generale, New York.

New Westin Hotel planned for San Antonio's Riverwalk Construction is scheduled to begin in December on The Westin Riverwalk, a new 453-room hotel being developed in the heart of San Antonio's Riverwalk area. Westin Hotels & Resorts, Seattle, will operate and manage the hotel when it is completed in 1999. Ownership and financing are by Silver Rio Limited Partnership. The developer is a joint venture of Alamosa Development Corp., San Antonio, and Houston-based Hines. The new hotel, which provides over 350 ft. of frontage on the Riverwalk, will feature more than 18,000 sq. ft. of meeting space.

Buckhead America acquires Midwest hotel concern Buckhead America Corp., an Atlanta-based hospitality services company, has completed the acquisition of Lodgekeeper Group Inc., a Prospect, Ohio-based concern that manages 24 hotels in Ohio, Indiana and Michigan. Terms were not disclosed, but one-half of the purchase price reportedly involved the issue of Buckhead common shares with an assigned value of approximately $8 per share. Buckhead plans to renovate and convert most of Lodgekeeper's 18 leasehold properties to Country Hearth Inns, a trademark that it purchased from Lodgekeeper in 1994.

Windy City sees opening of Marriott's first Fairfield Suites The first Fairfield Suites, and the 300th Fairfield hotel nationwide, opened May 15 in Minneapolis. An extension of Washington, D.C.-based Marriott International's Fairfield brand, Fairfield Suites is an all-suite economy hotel with average rates that will range between $65 and $75 per night. The Fairfield Suites Minneapolis/St. Paul is the first of 10 Fairfield Suites projected to open this year.

Financing set for Philly hotel Permanent financing in the amount of $90 million for the Philadelphia Marriott Convention Center Hotel has been arranged by Cassidy & Pinkard/Sonnenblick-Goldman, a joint venture between Cassidy & Pinkard, a regional commercial real estate firm based in Washington, D.C., and the New York investment banking firm of Sonnenblick-Goldman. The lenders are two life insurance companies, MassMutual and CIGNA. Located at 1201 Market St. in Center City Philadelphia, the 1,200-room hotel was completed in 1995.

Send your hospitality industry news via the Internet to Managing Editor Melanie Gibbs at [email protected]

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