October 03, 2007

Starwood Capital Group and Perseus Realty have signed an agreement to build a 1 Hotel, Starwood Capital Group's new eco-friendly luxury brand, in Washington, D.C. The 180-room hotel, which is expected to break ground in mid-2008 and open in 2010, will be at 22nd and M streets, NW, and will be LEED certified. The property will donate 1 percent of its profits to local environmental organizations.

The 475-room Pinehurst Resort in Pinehurst, N.C., will unveil three executive rooms comprising 3,000 square feet of new meeting space Monday. The addition brings the property's total meeting space to 58,000 square feet. In the spring, Pinehurst will complete an $8.5 million renovation of the 220 rooms in its Carolina Hotel.

The 600-room Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa, a Wyndham Grand Resort in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, has begun a $40 million renovation of its casino, meeting space, guest rooms, restaurants, golf courses and public spaces. The work on the casino finishes up this week, and the rest of the project will take five years to complete. Rio Mar has a total of 48,000 square feet of meeting space.

An Andaz hotel, the new luxury brand from Global Hyatt Corp., will be built as part of a mixed-use development in the center of Austin, Texas. To open in 2010, the 210-room property will have a rooftop restaurant and lounge. Meeting space details have not been announced.

The 632-room Swissotel Chicago has begun a $17.5 million guest-room renovation that will be completed by April. The hotel also is spending close to $50 million to add 23,000 square feet of meeting space, giving the property a total of 50,000 square feet. The new meeting space will open in June.

Ground was broken last week on Fan Pier, a mixed-use development near the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in South Boston that has been in the works for decades. First to rise will be a 500,000-square-foot office building, to be followed next year by a 175-room luxury hotel. More office, retail and residential space, plus a park and 96-slip marina, will be added over the next decade.

The 100-room Four Points by Sheraton Sacramento International Airport Hotel opened this week. Amenities include 32-inch flat-screen TVs and high-speed Internet access in all guest rooms, a restaurant, a fitness facility, a 24-hour airport shuttle and 2,000 square feet of meeting space.

InterContinental Hotels & Resorts announced last week the acquisition of a hotel under construction in Monterey, Calif. The 208-room property will be called the InterContinental The Clement Monterey. The hotel will feature a signature restaurant and bar, a luxury spa, a fitness center with an outdoor pool, 8,500 square feet of indoor meeting space and approximately 5,000 square feet of outdoor event space overlooking Monterey Bay. The development currently is under construction and will finish in the second quarter of 2008.

The 125-suite Residence Inn by Marriott San Diego Oceanside has opened. The four-story, $23 million hotel features a pool, a spa, an exercise room, a library lounge and 800 square feet of meeting space.

The 130-room Courtyard by Marriott Paso Robles (Calif.), in San Luis Obispo County, has opened its doors. The hotel features the Courtyard Cafe restaurant, an outdoor pool, an exercise room, a business center and 1,200 square feet of meeting space.

Orient-Express Hotels has acquired the 200-room Hotel das Cataratas in Brazil's Iguacu National Park and has taken over operations as of Oct. 1. The property, Orient-Express' third in Brazil, is the only hotel within the UNESCO World Heritage site on the Brazilian side of the impressive Iguau Falls. Orient-Express plans to extensively renovate the property upon obtaining the necessary permits, but the hotel will remain open throughout the process. With two large conference rooms for up to 200 people, the hotel is a two-minute walk from the falls and is surrounded by more than 161,450 square feet of national park.
Dubai-based hospitality company Jumeirah will run the 120-room Jumeirah Port Soller, Mallorca, currently being built on the cliffs of that Spanish city, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Scheduled to open in early 2010, the luxury resort will feature "extensive" conference and meeting facilities, two swimming pools and a 21,000-square-foot spa and wellness center.