The AC Hotel Washington D.C. Downtown Opens

Main Photo: The artwork by Anne Kyyro Quinn in the lobby corridor

Date: January 2020

Location: The Golden Triangle Business Improvement District, Washington DC, USA

Name: The AC Hotel Washington DC Downtown

No. of Keys: 219

Seller: The site is the Smith & Wollensky steakhouse shuttered some four years back. It is the first new ground-up hotel constructed in the Golden Triangle Business Improvement District since 1971.

Buyer: The 219-room AC Hotel by Marriott, 1112 19th St. NW, is the Bethesda-based hospitality giant’s second in the region following the AC Hotel National Harbor. OTO Development, a Spartanburg, South Carolina-based hospitality developer acquired the property for $23.4 million in 2016. The development team included WDG Architecture, Houston Paradigm Design Group and Lendlease as general contractor.

The European-influenced hotel brand, founded by Antonio Catalan, is now a subsidiary Marriott International. AC Hotels has the largest pipeline of any lifestyle brand Marriott owns with more than 100 expected to land in the next year.

This is OTO’s fifth AC Hotel. “We have a very distinctive selection of services that will attract what we call the essentialist. The essentialist is a well-travelled individual that really wants to have a local experience but at a higher level,” said Martha Valenzuela, the hotel’s director of sales. “The experience is elevated by food selections, by beverage selections and its European soul.”

OTO: Todd Turner and Corry Oakes were the first employees when George Dean Johnson, Jr. created Extended Stay America in 1995. Long-time friend and business partner Wayne Huizenga immediately recognised the opportunity and joined Johnson as the initial investors and leadership of a company that grew into the fastest growing Owner-Operated chain in lodging history.

Extended Stay America became a public company within 12 months of its founding, opening 475 hotels within 42 states over a nine-year history. The company was sold to Blackstone Group for over $3 billion in May 2004 in what was the largest public to private transaction in South Carolina history.

On the very day the deal closed, George Dean Johnson, Jr., Wayne Huizenga, Todd Turner, Jim Ovenden, and Corry Oakes left Extended Stay America to establish OTO Development, LLC with the business plan to develop and manage great select-service hotels with the best brands in the top markets in the United States.

The OTO Development team quickly grew with the addition of Extended Stay America leaders in real estate, construction, purchasing, information technology, and operations. Additional key team members joined from industry leading organisations such as Hilton as well as companies outside of the lodging industry, all contributing sophisticated systems knowledge and deep experience.

OTO Development is a part of The Johnson Group and today have 65 hotels across the USA under management, with brands as Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt.

The hotel’s lobby-adjacent kitchen, which is open to the public, serves breakfast featuring cured meats and croissants made from flour flown in from France. The artwork in the lobby delivers the hotel a D.C. touch, from a metallic glaze ceramic tile with images of the Washington Monumental and Capitol to a felt wall installation at the end of the lobby corridor resembling a Metro station.

Some of the hotel amenities including a fitness room and a rooftop terrace overlooking 19th Street. There will be a 2,238-square-foot seasonal cafe terrace outside the front entrance.

THPT Comment: OTO is an exciting company with some 65 hotels under management, including this new hotel in Washington DC.

First Seen: Biz Journal

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