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Construction begins on new downtown Louisville hotel

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Sept. 26, 2013) – Construction has begun on a new Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Louisville, City Properties Group and First Hospitality Group announced Thursday. Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Councilman David Tandy joined the developers in breaking ground on the new hotel at the corner of 4th and Chestnut Streets downtown.

Adjacent to the historic Henry Clay building, the Hilton Garden Inn Downtown at Clay Commons will add 162 guest rooms to the popular Clay Commons district. Designed as an eight-story, 121,700-s.f. foot building, the new hotel will feature an open-air rooftop restaurant and bar with unique food and beverage concepts. Construction of the new hotel will occur over a 13-month period with the grand opening planned for October 2014.

“This new hotel will be a welcome addition to the overall hotel accommodations we offer downtown visitors and specifically a great complement to the growing arts and entertainment scene in that mid-section area of South Fourth,” Fischer said. “This project adds to the momentum as we focus on the entire stretch of Fourth St. from the river to Iroquois Park to maximize the investment, the jobs, the retail, educational and cultural opportunities along that critical corridor.”

The Clay Commons district, developed around the renovated Henry Clay Building on 3rd Street and the Wright-Taylor Building and Guthrie-Coke Lofts on 4th Street, provides a unique urban experience at the heart of the Theater and Arts District on the southern edge of downtown Louisville. These properties offer residential units, a theater for live performances, restaurants, and catered event spaces with grand ballrooms and meeting rooms restored to their original stunning beauty.

The Hilton Garden Inn Downtown at Clay Commons, in combination with the Henry Clay, is envisioned as a mini-convention center, connecting support services and overnight room rentals with the event and meeting spaces already in use. Events such as weddings and conferences would be supported by the adjoining hotel, as would the over 275 events and theatre performances currently conducted each year at the Henry Clay.

The undeveloped property at 4th and Chestnut streets fills out the block. The Hilton Garden Inn Downtown at Clay Commons will complete the corner presence. This prime location is currently underutilized for the Downtown Louisville market. Approximately 300 employees will be engaged by the general contractor and its subcontractors over the course of construction. Once stabilized the hotel will employ more than 40 full-time team members and support staff. The hotel will front the existing PARC parking garage built mid-block, which will provide ample parking to support the 162 guest rooms and 14,000 square foot rooftop restaurant and bar.

“We are very excited about this project as it will be a great blend of a contemporary and hi-tech hotel with the classic style and history of the Henry Clay, capped off with a very cool roof top bar which will fit in well with the 4th Street vibe,” said Stephen Schwartz, CEO of First Hospitality Group, Inc. “It will be a very unique and a special place to stay and play in downtown Louisville.”

The Hilton Garden Inn Downtown at Clay Commons is a joint venture between City Properties Group of Louisville and First Hospitality Group of Chicago. In addition to being part of the development team, First Hospitality Group will also be the hotel’s operator.

“I am excited about the opportunity to work with Stephen Schwartz and First Hospitality Group, Inc. because of their focus throughout the Midwest on high impact urban hotel projects,” commented Bill Weyland, managing director of City Properties Group. “The insights and professionalism that they bring to the team make this an exciting project for all of our employees and investors.”