New luxury hotel under construction on the River Walk

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A group of investors have bought the Wyndham San Antonio River Walk Hotel and plan to spend $ 50 million to transform the aging 20-story property into a luxury InterContinental hotel.

The new hotel is expected to open in early 2023.

The Wyndham’s last day of operation was May 31, paving the way for a top-to-bottom interior renovation of the 410-room hotel, said Rob Sadoff, director and co-founder of Chicago-based Scarlett Hotel Group. .

Scarlett, who owns seven other hotels in the United States, said the project was a joint venture with Trailbreak Partners, a Denver-based private equity firm. The East Pecan Street Hotel is the company’s first property in San Antonio.

The new owners have not disclosed the purchase price. The seller, Austin-based Cypress Real Estate Advisors, did not return phone calls.

When it opens, the InterContinental will be the luxury brand’s first outpost in San Antonio. Wyndham is considered a mid-level brand.

The partners are optimistic about the future of San Antonio’s luxury hospitality market.

“We think the luxury market is underserved in downtown San Antonio,” Sadoff said.

After the renovation, the hotel will have 390 rooms, including up to 30 suites, and will include a restaurant and rooftop bar.

Two new upscale hotels have opened downtown since February – the Thompson San Antonio Hotel opened in February, followed by the Canopy By Hilton San Antonio Riverwalk. Both were under construction before the pandemic devastated San Antonio’s hospitality industry.

The Contessa on the River Walk hotel was purchased in November. The new owners say they plan to renovate the upscale 12-story, 265-room hotel.

Downtown hotels have been hit hard by the pandemic. But the Wyndham has suffered a bit more than other properties, according to statistics from Source Strategies, a local hotel consulting firm.

The hotel posted an average room occupancy rate of 39% in 2020 and achieved revenue per room of $ 38.77, half of what it posted in 2019, according to Source Strategies.

The average downtown hotel saw even less occupancy last year, at 34.3%. But downtown properties averaged more revenue per room than the Wyndham, at $ 44.78.

“Wyndham hotels have struggled to position themselves in the market,” said Paul Vaughn, senior vice president at Source Strategies.

He said the company’s parent company, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, owns several low-end brands, including Days Inn, La Quinta, Super 8 and Travelodge.

“They’ve acquired so many low-end brands that they’re kind of blurring their brand’s footprint,” he said.

The Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk is housed in a former National Bancshares Corp. building, opened in 1958. In 1997, after a complete renovation, the building was converted into an Adams Mark hotel.

It was then transformed into a Crown Plaza hotel before becoming a Wyndham property about a decade ago.

Many guests staying at the hotel in April and May have given the Wyndham a star on the Wyndham Hotels & Resorts website. They complained about the unsanitary rooms and that the hotel restaurant and bar were permanently closed.

Construction of the InterContinental is scheduled to begin in October.

Vaughn said the new hotel should attract customers familiar with the InterContinental brand.

“It’s in a good location on the River Walk,” he said. “He just needs some serious love.”

randy.diamond@express-news.net


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