Briefs: HI Express opens in Washington, D.C.; HVMG adds Darwin Hotel 

HI Express to Washington, D.C.: IHG Hotels & Resorts has announced the opening of Holiday Inn Express Washington, D.C, Downtown. Operating under the management of Urgo Hotels & Resort, the hotel consists of 247 rooms, a 788-square-feet rooftop meeting room with views of the Capitol Building and a 24-hour fitness facility.  

Darwin Hotel in Atlanta

HVMG adds Darwin Hotel to portfolio: Atlanta-based Hospitality Ventures Management Group (HVMG) has added the 111-key Darwin Hotel in Atlanta to its portfolio of third-party managed hotels across the U.S. HVMG was in charge of the former independent hotel’s rebranding and renovation. The four-story hotel features eight individually themed suites, a lobby, food prep/kitchen for pop-up chef programming and a dog park. Navin Patel and his two sons, Shyam and Sagar Patel, acquired the hotel in 2016. HVMG presently operates 56 hotels and a convention center across 16 states totaling over 9,000 rooms.  

Hilton’s Conrad brand to debut in Germany: Hilton has announced a franchise agreement with Munich Hotel Partners to debut the Conrad Hotels & Resorts brand in Germany with the opening of Conrad Hamburg. The existing property will undergo extensive refurbishments before opening as a Conrad-branded hotel in 2024 and join 15 Conrad properties trading or under development in EMEA. The luxury hotel will be housed in the Levantehaus building in Hamburg and will have 238 rooms, including 25 suites and 32 residential suites. The hotel will also comprise nine meeting rooms, a lounge bar and restaurant, luxury spa, gym and private pool. The building was built in 1912 as an office building and was converted into a shopping arcade in 1997. Currently, Conrad’s portfolio includes over 40 properties across five continents.  

Davidson to manage 21c Museum Hotel: New York-based Hotel JRE Partners has selected Atlanta-based Davidson Hospitality Group to operate the 21c Museum Hotel Chicago under Pivot, Davidson’s lifestyle operating vertical. The boutique, lifestyle hotel features 297 rooms, including 106 suites, 10,000 square feet of event space curated with contemporary works of art and a restaurant. This marks Davidson’s first partnership with JRE Partners. Davidson’s portfolio currently comprises 85 properties, over 200 restaurants, bars and lounges and over 1.5 million square feet of meeting space across the U.S.  

WoodSpring Suites groundbreaking in California: Construction has begun on a WoodSpring Suites in Corona, CA. WoodSpring is the economy extended stay brand under Choice Hotels International. The 122-room hotel is expected to open in late 2023. The property will feature three suite layouts, expanded lobby with a coffee station, 24-hour fitness center and a guest laundry room. The property will join Choice’s growing portfolio of extended-stay properties in California, accompanying the first Everhome Suites, also in Corona, and the biggest MainStay Suites hotel, which recently opened in greater Los Angeles. WoodSpring Suites Corona is being developed by Florida-based Gold Coast Premier Properties. Along with nine open hotels across Florida and South Carolina, the company has three WoodSpring Suites under active construction and agreements to launch four more hotels to market in California, Connecticut, North Carolina and Rhode Island.  

Hyatt Regency Jersey City sale closes: The sale of the 351-key Hyatt Regency Jersey City along the Hudson River in Jersey City, NJ, has closed. The hotel was acquired by a joint venture between affiliates of Taconic Capital Advisors LP and HEI Hotels & Resorts and was sold by a joint venture between affiliates of Veris Residential, Inc. and Hyatt Hotels Corp. The full-service hotel includes a gym, business center and over 20,000 square feet of flexible meeting space. The hotel was constructed in 2002 and renovated in phases between 2010 and 2015. JLL’s Hotels & Hospitality Group closed the sale and represented the seller.   

$245M financing for 6-property portfolio: JLL Capital Markets has closed a $245 million portfolio financing for a Napa Valley, CA hotel property; three Class A coastal Orange County retail centers; one Class A multi-housing community in San Diego’s Little Italy submarket; and a single-tenant showroom and restaurant space in downtown Yountville, CA. The properties include The Estate, a 22-acre hospitality and destination retail complex in Yountville with 193 rooms across Hotel Villagio, Vintage House and the five-bedroom villa at The Estate. JLL marketed the portfolio on behalf of the borrower and secured payment financing from four lenders. Boardwalk Investments Group locked the fixed-rate financing earlier this year.   

OYO launches new category: OYO, the Indian hotel company, has launched an elite category called ‘Super OYO’ to increase quality and customer experience across its portfolio. The new service will recognize hotels providing the most consistent and high-quality customer experience and will continuously analyze each property’s performance based on parameters like customer ratings and reviews, keeping maximum rooms operational consistently, ease of check-in, etc. ‘Super OYO’ is available to all users in India and will be launched in key global markets next year. Currently, there are over 200 Super OYOs available on the site. The initiative has been rolled out in 70 cities in India.    

Recognition for Ivan Artolli: Ivan Artolli, general manager of Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo and member of the European Hotel Manager Association since 2002, was awarded the Leading Legend 2022 accolade at the Leading Hotels of the World’s annual conference in Mexico. A veteran in the luxury hotel sector, Artolli was recognized for his work in the sector over his 35-year career.