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North America

Graduate Hotels Launches a Short-Term Rental Brand

Alan Woinski and Kim Woinski
August 7th, 2022 at 1:52 PM EDT

Skift Take

  • The vast majority of lodging company earnings, both REIT and C-Corp, have been very positive, with the REITs being the biggest surprise.
  • Crescent Hotels & Resorts has added The Viv, Anaheim, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel, to its Latitudes: Lifestyle by Crescent collection.
  • Black Creek Mexico announced that Grupo Alojica completed the Westin Resort & Spa acquisition, in Puerto Vallarta, from affiliates of Marriott Vacations Worldwide.

The DJIA ended Friday with a gain of 77 points, while Nasdaq was down 63, the S&P 500 fell 7 points, and the 10-year treasury yield was up .16 at 2.84% on the strong jobs report. Lodging stocks were modestly lower, although the two big gainers were to the upside. SVC surged 10% on their earnings report. The vast majority of lodging company earnings, both REIT and C-Corp, have been very positive, with the REITs being the biggest surprise. SVC was one of the few big winners on the reports as investors still seem quite skeptical even with return of capital being prominent. The other big gainer on Friday was MCG, up 8%.

Crescent Hotels & Resorts has added The Viv, Anaheim, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel, to its Latitudes: Lifestyle by Crescent collection. Formerly the Radisson Blu, the Southern California property was converted to a hotel within Marriott’s Tribute Portfolio. The Viv, Anaheim, A Tribute Portfolio Hotel features multiple food & beverage options and accommodates corporate meetings and small events with its three event rooms. 

Black Creek Mexico announced that Grupo Alojica completed the Westin Resort & Spa acquisition, in Puerto Vallarta, from affiliates of Marriott Vacations Worldwide. Marriott International manages the 280-room beachfront resort. BCM plans for the property to undergo a transformational capital improvement plan, including a comprehensive renovation of all guestrooms and public areas, a re-imagination of the food and beverage offerings, and the enhancement of the hotel’s pool, spa, fitness, and other recreational activities. The Westin Resort & Spa, Puerto Vallarta, features 280 guestrooms and suites, six restaurants and bars, as well as 23,000 square feet of meeting space. 

The Sheraton Suites Houston, located in the heart of Uptown Houston, TX, will be rebranded as The Chifley-a Tapestry Collection hotel by Hilton, with an anticipated opening date in November. The rebrand includes a slew of renovations to the 284 suite-style rooms and the 8,000 square feet of meeting space. Included in the hotel’s renovations is a new restaurant and bar. According to The Chifley’s fact sheet, the hotel also offers a year-round outdoor pool and a whirlpool, on-site valet and self-parking, and a fitness center. 

Twenty Four Seven Hotels announced the grand opening of the Hampton Inn & Suites Rancho Cucamonga in California, bringing the company’s total portfolio to 26 hotels, 17 of which are in the Golden State. Hotel amenities include a 600-square-foot meeting room, an outdoor heated pool, marketplace, and fitness center. 

Pebblebrook Hotel Trust closed on the sale of the 306-room Sofitel Philadelphia at Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia, PA, for $80 million to a third party. Proceeds from the sale of Sofitel Philadelphia at Rittenhouse Square will be used for general corporate purposes and to reduce the Company’s outstanding debt borrowings associated with recent hotel acquisitions. 

Graduate Hotels just launched Graduate Homes, a short-term vacation rental service. The program is quite similar to Airbnb, but a Graduate Homes stay includes access to Graduate Hotels services, from hotel concierges to on-site amenities like pools and gyms. Guests will also get discounts at Graduate Hotels’ restaurants and bars. Furthermore, Graduate Homes has partnered with the experiential platform Way, which can be used to book in-home services like yoga classes and personal mixologist. Graduate Homes is launching this fall in Ann Arbor, MI, and Oxford, MS and plans to expand to additional markets down the road.

Extended Stay America announced that subsidiaries of ESH Hospitality, Inc. are converting more than 100 recently acquired WoodSpring Suites hotels to the Extended Stay America family of brands later this year. With the addition of these properties, Extended Stay America will have a portfolio of 762 hotels, comprising nearly 85,000 rooms in 45 states.

Wharton Hospitality, an operating platform of Wharton Equity Partners, sold the Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Montrose, CO. The buyer and purchase price were not disclosed. Wharton purchased the 122-key building, in 2011, in partnership with an affiliate of Waramaug Hospitality. On-site amenities include several meeting rooms, a bar, an outdoor BBQ area, indoor pool, and fitness center. The transaction caps a busy month for Wharton Equity Partners, which also completed the sale of “Eve at the District,” a mixed-use project in Miami, FL, through its Wharton Urban platform.

Hawkeye Hotels, with the assistance of Berkadia, announced the acquisition of the Hotel Indigo Pittsburgh East Liberty in Pittsburgh, PA, marking their third hotel owned and operated in Pennsylvania. Hotel Indigo Pittsburgh East Liberty is a restored boutique hotel featuring food and beverage offerings including an array of local cuisine along with a full bar.

Pyramid Global Hospitality has taken over operations of the 400-room Hyatt Regency Houston West in Houston, TX. Amenities include an outdoor pool, fitness center, 25,000 square feet of event space, and three on-site dining options. 

RLJ Lodging Trust has acquired the fee simple interest in the 124-room, 21c Museum Hotel Nashville, in Nashville, TN, for a purchase price of $59 million. The Company plans to continue to have 21c operate the Hotel in affiliation with Accor. The eight-story building offers over 8,000 square feet of meeting and exhibition space, a restaurant and lounge, outdoor event space, a fitness center, spa, and off-site valet parking. Following the acquisition of the hotel, the company owns 96 hotels across 23 states. Cushman & Wakefield Global Hospitality advised JRE Partners on the sale of the 21c Museum Hotel Nashville to RLJ Lodging Trust. 

Blue Print Hospitality has plans to complete a renovation of the historic Herring Hotel in Amarillo, TX. The hotel will feature a fully-renovated collection of 250 guest rooms and amenities. The hotel will also feature a rooftop lounge, business facilities, event ballrooms, restaurants, coffee shop, and retail options. 

Red Roof announced the opening of the HomeTowne Studios by Red Roof San Antonio SeaWorld/Northwest in San Antonio, TX. The 64-room, extended-stay property features a seasonal pool, and coin laundry.

Rosewood Hotels & Resorts announced Rosewood Residences Beverly Hills, Rosewood’s first standalone branded residential project in Los Angeles, CA. Developed by Nahla Capital and CPI Companies, the 17 ultra-luxury residences are scheduled for completion in 2024, with sales to officially commence in 2023. Rosewood Residences Beverly Hills will be exclusively managed by a dedicated Rosewood Residential Team. Amenities include a beautiful resort-like rooftop retreat featuring a pool, whirlpool spa, fitness center, outdoor relaxation areas, and a communal rooftop lounge and dining spaces to host gatherings.

Charlestowne Hotels announced the takeover of Hotel Marcel in New Haven, CT, and the opening of the Lockwood Hotel in Waterville, ME. Hotel Marcel, an adaptive reuse project, is expected to be the country’s first sustainable net-zero energy hotel. The former R&D facility for Armstrong Rubber Company has been transformed into a 165-room property with 1,000+ photovoltaic panels, a restaurant, and 12 Tesla Supercharger stations. Lockwood Hotel will be the first newly built boutique hotel in Waterville, ME, in decades when it opens on August 15. The property features 53 guestrooms and a restaurant.

The Indigo Road Hospitality Group acquired Snowbird Mountain Lodge in Robbinsville, NC, and assumed management of the property. IRHG partnered with Madison Capital Group LLC and JPW Development. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. This acquisition marks Indigo Road’s third property in North Carolina. 

Hotel Equities was selected as the new management firm to operate The Atlantic Hotel & Spa in Fort Lauderdale, FL, the newest addition to Hotel Equities’ recently launched lifestyle division. The property is owned by Atlantic Hotel Assets, LLC. The Atlantic Hotel & Spa is a 124-room boutique hotel with an oceanfront terrace, a rooftop bar and pool with poolside services, onsite dining, Spa Atlantic, and 4,00 square feet of flexible meeting space. 

Wyndham Hotels & Resorts announced the expansion of its flagship Wyndham Grand brand, adding the Grandover Resort & Spa in Greensboro, NC, to its growing global portfolio. The 244-room resort features two 18-hole championship golf courses, a spa, tennis courts, fitness center, fine dining and more than 45,000 square feet of flexible meeting space. Through its affiliation with Wyndham Grand, Grandover will also become the newest hotel to join The Meetings Collection, Wyndham’s curated collection of hotels and resorts in highly sought-after meetings destinations. The resort is the centerpiece of Grandover, a multi-experience community developed and managed by Koury Corporation, offering shopping, dining and recreations as well as business and residential spaces.

Kasa Living, Inc. added another property to its collection with an opening at Archive, a luxury apartment building located within Reno Experience District in Reno, NV. Kasa Archive Reno-Tahoe, as it will be known, is slated to open on August 15 in the innovative new development. The property features 82 upscale designed units and offers co-working areas, indoor-outdoor spaces, luggage lockers, a fitness center, and on-site parking. Beyond that, the RED complex includes over 65,000+ square feet of retail space, a public park with a jumbo LED screen and outdoor stage. Kasa offers its tech-enable hospitality at the property, including a Virtual Front Desk that supports contactless check-in, 24/7 guest support, and building access that leverages smart locks for safety, in addition to the building’s impressive security.

Best Western Hotels & Resorts announced the opening of the Best Western Downtown Casper Hotel in Casper, WY. Owned by West Center Hospitality Ops LLC, the hotel recently completed renovations and features 200 total guestrooms, including 22 suites. The hotel features a business center, as well as extensive meeting and event space, including 15 conference rooms. The hotel also offers an on-site restaurant, a cocktail bar and lounge, a heated indoor pool with a separate kiddie pool, a fitness center, newly renovated sundry shop, enclosed courtyard area, and guest laundry facilities. 

Capital Vacation, LLC, entered into expanded services agreements via the Capital Advantage program with six VRI Americas managed resorts. The new Capital Advantage agreements include Maui Schooner Resort in Maui, HI; Kahana Falls in Maui, HI; Desert Breezes Resort in Palm Desert, CA; Carriage Place in Branson, MO; Surrey Townhomes in Branson, MO; and Petit Crest Villas in Marble Hill, GA. Capital Vacations will provide these Associations with the Capital Advantage suite of services, including enhanced rental distribution, its Destinality travel platform, sales of delinquent inventory, collections, and inventory recovery. 

Ashford Hospitality Trust is planning on selling two hotels by the end of the year in a move it could replicate as it works to deleverage its balance sheet. Ashford Hospitality Trust has one hotel under contract and another on the market. Both are what the REIT calls non-core properties in its portfolio of 100 hotels. More details about the two hotels were not immediately available. 

The Chetrit Group has secured a $185 million construction loan from Mack Real Estate Credit Strategies for the 570-key Hotel Carter located in New York City’s Times Square. The financing will replace a $152 million bridge loan from JPMorgan in 2018. Surya Capital Partners arranged the financing for Chetrit. Never one to get good reviews, the new loan will be used to complete a gut renovation and turn the property into a modern hotel. 

WoodHouse announced the acquisition of the Elevation Hotel & Spa, in Crested Butte, CO. Elevation is the only luxury ski-in, ski-out resort located at the base area of the Crested Butte Mountain Resort. WoodHouse acquired the 262-room Elevation hotel from Boxer Property & Resorts. The Elevation will remain independently owned by WoodHouse. WoodHouse will debut a pop-up concept of its award-winning Dallas restaurant, Joe, as part of the hotel’s 9380 Tavern. Plans for the property’s re-imagining are still in early development and will be shared at a later date. The hotel will remain in full operation throughout the summer and the forthcoming ski season.

Playa Hotels & Resort N.V. assumed management of the Seadust Cancun Family Resort in Mexico. Playa will manage all operations, sales and marketing of the resort. Located in the Cancun Hotel Zone, the 502-room resort features 10 restaurants and bars, a fitness center, and a holistic spa. Seadust Cancun Family Resort will join other notable all-inclusive resorts managed by Playa Hotels & Resorts. 

PMZ Realty Capital LLC arranged acquisition financing for the Holiday Inn & Suites Albuquerque Airport, located in Albuquerque, NM. The $9 million acquisition loan was provided by a life insurance company and will allow the owner to complete the acquisition and a $3.5M property improvement plan on the hotel. The four-story, 121-room hotel offers a business center, fitness center, and an indoor heated pool.

Encore Opportunity Fund secured a $54 million construction loan for the Embassy Suites at Sunset Walk, a 300-unit condominium hotel project in Orlando, FL. Centennial Bank provided the loan, while Concord Summit Capital arranged the loan. 

Sonnenblick-Eichner Company arranged a $58 million sale and $40.6 million of acquisition financing of the fee simple and leasehold interests in the Surfsand Resort in Cannon Beach, OR. The 95-room hotel is the only full-service resort of its kind on the Oregon Coast. The resort was purchased by Vesta Hospitality. The new ownership is planning a $9 million renovation to further enhance the resort and its amenities.

HREC Investment Advisors arranged the sale of the 66-room Extended Stay America Minot in Minot, ND. The buyer is Lodging Advisory Group. HREC Investment Advisors exclusively represented the seller Norman Leslie and Elevation Hospitality, LLC. 

HREC also arranged the sale of the 129-room Hampton Inn in Bloomington, IN, adjacent to the Indiana University campus. The property was acquired by an affiliate of District Lodging Capital. HREC Investment Advisors exclusively represented the seller on this transaction.

Finally, HREC announced it had arranged the sale of the 56-room Holiday Inn Express Boonville in Boonville, MO. The property was acquired by Neal2 LLC. HREC Investment Advisors exclusively represented the seller, IntelliStay Boonville, LLC, on this transaction.

HVS Brokerage & Advisory announced the sale of the lender-owned, 216-key Four Points by Sheraton Houston Greenway Plaza, located in Houston, TX. The mid-rise, select-service hotel was purchased by Rainier Development & Construction from Emigrant Bank. New ownership plans to extensively renovate and convert the hotel into a multi-family residential asset. 

Crystal Investment Property announced the sale of the La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Missoula in Missoula, MT. The final sale price is confidential. The hotel is an 80-key, midscale, interior corridor, select-service, franchised hotel. The La Quinta Inn Missoula features a business center, fitness center, indoor pool, hot tub, and a meeting room.

Personnel Moves

MMI Hotel Group announced Andrew Pace had joined its corporate team as director of acquisitions and strategic partnerships. Prior to joining MMI, Pace led third-party management business development responsibilities at Hospitality Venture Management Group and Strand Hospitality.

Benchmark Pyramid Luxury & Lifestyle named Sam Johnson vice president of operations. Sam’s appointment marks a return to the Benchmark family, having previously served as general manager for two years within Benchmark’s Pacific Northwest portfolio. In his new role at Benchmark, Sam will support their Seattle and Portland, WA markets. He will support the day-to-day successes of the property-level associates while building long-term relationships with the hotel management reams and various ownership groups. 

Stonebridge Companies announced Steve Kakaty has joined the team as Chief Investment Officer. In his new role, Kakaty will lead Stonebridge’s real estate platform as the company continues to grow its hotel portfolio. Prior to joining Stonebridge, Kakaty worked at Rockwood Capital.

Rebecca Godfrey is welcomed back to CBRE as Senior Director and leader of the company’s Tourism Consulting practice. Rebecca will team up with Hildegard Snelgrove, Assistant Director, to enhance and scale the Tourism Consulting services. 

Sonder Holdings, Inc. appointed Deeksha Hebbar as Chief Operating Officer, and Chris Berry as Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer. Sonder recently consolidated its operations teams. In his role of Chief Operating Officer, Hebbar will lead this combined team, overseeing all Sonder operations, including turning over units, opening and maintaining properties, and delivering service to guests. Hebbar was previously SVP of Operations at Sonder, and prior to Sonder held roles at Google Inc. and McKinsey & Company. Berry joins Sonder as Chief Accounting Officer, overseeing all accounting functions as well as procurement. Berry previously served as Chief Accounting Officer at Alaska Air Group, Inc. 


Crescent Hotels & Resorts announced the appointment of Kathleen Barone as Vice President of Global Sales. In her new role, Barone will further develop sales from a global perspective and will serve as the direct report for both regional and national sales employees within the organization. She will also ensure leadership aligns for success in motivating and inspiring team members to optimal performance. Kathleen was most recently a Senior Account Executive at Marriott International

Alan Woinski and Kim Woinski
August 7th, 2022 at 1:52 PM EDT

Companies: 21c Museum Hotel, Accor, Ashford Hospitality Trust, Benchmark Pyramid Luxury & Lifestyle, Best Western, Best Western Hotels & Resorts, Capital Vacations, CBRE Hotels, Charlestowne Hotels, Crescent Hotels & Resorts, Embassy Suites by Hilton, Encore Opportunity Fund, Ennismore, Extended Stay America, Extended Stay America Select Suites, Extended Stay America Suites, Four Points by Sheraton, Graduate Hotels, Hampton by Hilton, Hawkeye Hotels, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, HomeTowne Studios, Hotel Equities, Hotel Indigo, HREC Investment Advisors, HVS, IHG Hotels & Resorts, Kasa Living, Inc., La Quinta, Marriott International, MMI Hotel Group, Pebblebrook Hotel Trust, Playa Hotels & Resorts, PMZ Realty Capital LLC, Pyramid Global Hospitality, Red Roof, RLJ Lodging Trust, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, Service Properties Trust, Sofitel, Soho House and Co Inc., Sonder Holdings Inc., Stonebridge Companies, Tapestry Collection by Hilton, The Chetrit Group, Tribute Portfolio, Twenty Four Seven Hotels, Westin Hotels & Resorts, WoodHouse, Woodspring Suites, Wyndham Grand, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts

Locations: Albuquerque, California, Cancun, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Houston, Indiana, Los Angeles, Maine, Missouri, Montana, Nashville, Nevada, New York City, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Orlando, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Puerto Vallarta, Texas, Wyoming

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