Image source: WSJ
The Wall Street Journal reported on a multi-million dollar sale of the 438-room NY LaGuardia Airport Mariott hotel (102-05 Ditmars Boulevard – GMAP) in East Elmhurst (about a mile north of that block-sized property that recently came on the market for $21 million near Citi Field). The sale was completed last Friday for $21 million, apparently one third of the price it held in 2007.
Hotel industry executive Marc Gordon, founder of Rubicon Cos., a private Greenwich, CT, real-estate investment company that acquired the property, says “The price point we bought it at is clearly a major part of the property’s attraction.” He also likes that it is so close to Manhattan. As far as occupancy goes, the hotel did ok over the past year, with a relatively high occupancy rate in the 80% range.
The $22 million price may have been an attractive selling point, but it also was puzzling to lodging analysts. Tom McConnell, executive managing director of the hotel transactions group at Cushman & Wakefield, says that airport hotels are generally valued lower than those in a central business district. The condition of the property may have contributed to the lower price, too (the previous owners had planned to make $11.5 million in improvements). Apparently the hotel is in need of some serious upgrades (read: capital projects) both inside and out. Moderately-priced hotels have opened up in Manhattan, appealing to budget-conscious travelers who have in the past stayed at cheaper airport hotels.
Gordon says he plans to use his experience managing hotels to improve the performance of this hotel, indicating that it is one of the “premier hotels in Queens.”
Airport Hotel Discount [WSJ]