Articles Posted in Hotel Development

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By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
15 April 2014

DTLA against the San Gabriel Mountains - WSJThe coolest new downtown in America

If you haven’t been to what the cognoscenti now call “DTLA” (downtown Los Angeles) for a while, you might not recognize it. Gone are the days the sidewalks were rolled up at 5:00 pm and you had to go to Hollywood or Santa Monica for drinks or some fun. Earlier this year, Brett Martin of GQ magazine dubbed it “the coolest new downtown in America.”

In fact, the introduction to Brett Martin’s article is a great summary of the miraculous change in the demographics of DTLA that provide part of the reason that everyone seems to want to buy or build a hotel in Los Angeles today. Here is what it said:

America’s Next Great City Is Inside L.A.

For decades, Downtown has been the dark center of L.A.: a wasteland of half-empty office buildings and fully empty streets. But amid the glittering towers and crumbly Art Deco facades, a new generation of adventurous chefs, bartenders, loft dwellers, artists, and developers are creating a neighborhood as electrifying and gritty as New York in the ’70s. Brett Martin navigates his way through the coolest new downtown in America.

What does this “renaissance” mean in terms of the LA market for hoteliers?

Expanding markets are good for the hotel business. DTLA has become a destination and a hub of activity and excitement. Los Angeles has had so little hotel development over the past few decades, that it is one of the most underserved markets in the US now. And as hotel room rates jump, it is suddenly feasible to buy or build hotels that made no economic sense just a little while ago.

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Published on:

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
22 January 2014

Hotel Developer Forum in Los Angeles

With hotel development beginning to blossom in many national markets where the cost to buy a hotel substantially exceeds the cost to build one, JMBM’s hotel lawyers recently held a Hotel Developer Forum focused on the City of Los Angeles. The program was moderated by Jim Butler, Ben Reznik and Guy Maisnik. Bud Ovrom and Michael Santana were guest speakers.

Bud Ovrom is the General Manager of the LA Convention Center and is charged with figuring out how to get 4,000 more hotel rooms to support the Convention Center, which is at the heart of the remaking of Downtown Los Angeles. Santana was appointed as the Chief Administrative Officer for the City by former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in 2009, and recently agreed to continue in that position at the request of newly elected Mayor Eric Garcetti. Santana is the Budget Chief for Los Angeles and has negotiated all the development incentive deals made by the City since he took office.

There were a number of interesting take aways for the developers attending this gathering. One is that the City of Los Angeles wants to see 4,000 new hotel rooms developed in the downtown area serving the Los Angeles Convention Center — and the City is willing to provide economic incentives to make it happen (up to 50% of the property specific revenues from transient occupancy taxes, sales takes, property taxes and the like).

But these City incentives come with strings attached, which developers will have to weigh against the benefits of the incentives. Read on for the details.

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Published on:

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
17 January 2014

Hotel Lawyer on Hotel Mixed-Use.

Four%20Seasons%20Philadelphia%20Liberty%2002.jpgProposed $1.2 billion, 59-story Comcast Center with Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia, PA.

JMBM’s hotel lawyers are proud to be the hotel legal and advisory team for the developers on the Four Seasons luxury hotel component of this spectacular project. This is one of the high-profile hotel-retail-office mixed-use projects we have been working on for more than a year.

Hotel mixed-use is back! Hotels are being added to projects with retail, residential, office, entertainment and other uses — and the multiple uses enhance each other’s value, so the value of whole is worth more than the sum of the parts. If this subject interests you, see the links below the press release.

Here is the press release from Comcast and Liberty Property Trust announcing the project.


PRESS RELEASE
Comcast Corporation and Liberty Property Trust
Designed by Lord Norman Foster and developed by Liberty Property Trust to achieve LEED Platinum Certification, the 59-story tower will include a Four Seasons Hotel. Thousands of jobs and billions of dollars of economic activity will be created in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania commonwealth.

Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and Liberty Property Trust (NYSE: LRY) announced today they will jointly develop the “Comcast Innovation and Technology Center” on the 1800 block of Arch Street in Center City Philadelphia. The proposed $1.2 billion 59-story, 1,121-foot tower will neighbor Comcast Center, Comcast Corporation’s global headquarters, and become a dedicated home for the company’s growing workforce of technologists, engineers, and software architects. The facility will also create a media center in the heart of the City by becoming home to the operations of local broadcast television stations NBC 10/WCAU and Telemundo 62/WWSI and offer space for local technology startups.

Designed by world-renowned architect Lord Norman Foster of Foster + Partners, the glass and stainless steel tower will complement Comcast Center as a new energetic dimension to Center City. The 1.517 million rentable square foot project will include a new Four Seasons hotel and a soaring, block-long lobby with a glass-enclosed indoor plaza accompaniment to Comcast Center’s existing, dynamic outdoor plaza. The lobby will feature a restaurant and a new concourse will provide direct connections with SEPTA’s Suburban Station, enhancing accessibility and providing new options for commuters. The $1.2 billion mixed-use tower is expected to be the tallest building in the United States outside of New York and Chicago and will be the largest private development project in the history of Pennsylvania.

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By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
02 January 2014

Hotel Lawyer: Some lessons for the rising interest in golf.

Golf courses are back in popularity — for play, purchase and sale, and development. Whatever your involvement, you will likely find today’s article by my partner Guy Maisnik to be interesting and helpful in avoiding unnecessary losses.

Some other articles on golf are referenced at the end of this article.

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By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
4 December 2013

Hotel Lawyer on the jump in hotel development and investment activity.

These are getting to be pretty exciting times to be in the hotel business. Hotel industry fundamentals have continued to improve since the Great Recession and none of the experts see a particular event or reason that fundamentals will stall. Although occupancy growth rate is slowing in some sectors, ADR growth generally continues to drive greater profits to the bottom line.

All this activity creates “management agreement opportunities”

New development is finally coming back, and 2014 may be a break-out year for long-delayed projects. The volume of purchase and sale transactions continues to grow. And owners or investors are seeking to maximize hotel value by repositioning existing assets.

The confluence of these factors is creating a lot of hotel management agreement opportunities for hotel brands, operators and owner/developers.
The 2 most important things affecting the value of your hotel

In the midst of all this activity, hotel developers and investors should remember that two of the most important things they can do with their hotel asset are to

  1. Choose the “right” brand and operator
  2. Negotiate a management agreement that preserves a reasonable amount of value, control and flexibility

And . . . get practical guidance on these issues from experienced veterans representing your interests (and only your interests) at the earliest possible time in the process.

New White Paper on short term management contracts
In case you missed it, Hotel Management recently published an excellent white paper that is highly relevant to all of these hotel management agreement opportunities. The article is called, “The Evolution of Short-Term Management Contracts“. Click here to download a PDF of the article.

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By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
15 August 2013

Hotel Lawyer on the reported sale by Marriott of 3 Edition hotels.

Craig Karmin and Alexandra Berzon of the Wall Street Journal broke a big story yesterday evening which appeared in the August 15, 2013 US edition of the paper at page C3. The headline is “Marriott Close to Deal to Sell Three Hotels to Abu Dhabi Fund.
The story, in which I am quoted, describes reports from people close to the deal, that Marriott International is about to close a sale of 3 Edition hotels in London, New York and Miami Beach. The reported buyer is Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, or ADIA.

Other highlights of the article:

  • Marriott has said that it planned to invest up to $800 million in the 3 hotels
  • David Loeb of RW Baird estimates that Marriott has already spent about $575 million to buy, convert and upgrade the 3 properties
  • Marriott is expected to make a profit on the sale

So what does this transaction mean?

Here is what I think this transaction means:

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Published on:

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
13 May 2013


Meet the Money® made the news again this year, with an article on the Wall Street Journal “Developments” blog. Written by Kris Hudson, the article discusses the return of hotel construction, what types of financing are available, and which markets will be able to support new hotels.

Meet the Money® speakers Marty Collins of Gatehouse Capital, Anne Hampton of Wells Fargo Bank Hospitality Finance, Alison Cumberland and Abid Gilani of Marriott International, Kevin Mahoney of Stonebridge Companies and Paul Novak at Whitman Peterson Capital Partners were quoted in the story.

Conference speakers highlighted the CMBS market, gateway city locations, and upper-midscale hotels developments as factors that might help push construction financing in 2013, although some noted that lending standards are still strict and that many markets may not have a demand for more rooms.

If you haven’t read the article yet, you can find it here: Lenders Checking In? Hoteliers Say Construction Lending Is Reviving.

You can more great information from Meet the Money® 2013 at www.HotelLawyer.com on our RESOURCE CENTER, under “Hotel Industry Presentations.”

Published on:

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
15 March 2013

Great opportunity . . . and danger . . . await shopping center owners who seek to add hotels to their shopping centers, malls and retail centers.

An interesting confluence of factors has ignited a wave of hotel development — adding hotels to shopping centers, malls and retail centers. This trend is already underway and will be headline news for the next couple of years.

There are compelling synergies for both the shopping center and the hotel. These have been thoroughly documented by major players. One major shopping center owner performed a multi-year study on its 200+ properties and found that the right hotel can boost gross sales at shopping centers 20% to 40%. And the associated hotels also get a boost in Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) of 30% to 40% over hotels in their competitive set.

If you need more information on the basics — why people are adding hotels to shopping centers and malls — look at the articles posted on www.HotelLawyer.com. From the home page, scroll down and look on the right-hand side for under “Hotel Development” or go to www.hotellaw.jmbm.com/hotel_development.

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Published on:

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
5 March 2013

Hotel Lawyer on adding a hotel to shopping centers and malls.

The ULI program held on February 20, 2013 in JMBM’s Los Angeles offices was a great success. The program title says it all — “Back to the Future: The Renaissance of Hotel-Retail Mixed-Use.”

As one might expect for a ULI event on a timely topic like this, there was a capacity crowd, sharing of the latest “technology” in adding hotels to shopping centers, and a veteran team of presenters.

Jim Butler, Chairman of JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group®, moderated the panel, which included:

  • Guy Maisnik, Partner and Vice Chairman of JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group®
  • Steve Mermell, Assistant City Manager, City of Pasadena
  • Bruce Baltin, Senior Vice President, PKF Consulting
  • Les Melcher, SVP – Business Development, Woodbine Development Corporation
  • The panel looked at why many shopping center owners and developers are adding hotels to their projects, and commented on some tips and traps along the way. There were some great case studies that the panelists worked on.

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    Published on:

    By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group®
    Hotel Lawyers | Authors of www.HotelLawBlog.com
    28 January 2013

    We are at the beginning of what looks to be a renaissance of “hotel-retail mixed-use” development. Shopping center developers nationwide are exploring the feasibility of adding a hotels to existing retail properties, while others are already implementing plans that have been in the pipeline. Some are adding hotels to the mix for new ground up development. Fueling this trend is research showing that both retailers and hoteliers make huge gains in revenue when they come together in the “hotel-retail mixed-use” environment.

    My partner, Guy Maisnik, and I recently wrote an article on this subject for Hotel Business and it is reprinted below, with permission.

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