Hotel Minneapolis sold for $44M; new owner plans renovation

A San Fransisco-based private equity firm has purchased downtown’s 222-room Hotel Minneapolis.

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HPT to buy more conservatively, focus on renovations

Hospitality Properties Trust continued an acquisitions-based growth strategy in the third quarter that added 16 hotels to its portfolios—on top of 18 that were added in Q2. But company executives said during an earnings call with investors that going forward, the strategy could change.

“We’re being a little bit more conservative about how we invest, and we’re being careful about who we invest with,” said HPT President and COO John Murray. “We have a lot of renovations that we’re going to be working on during the course of next year, related to the pretty healthy level of acquisitions we made this year.”

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Busy hotel developers plan first downtown Minneapolis project

The team of JR Hospitality and Hawkeye Hotels, which are developing hotels in five Twin Cities suburbs, are working on their first downtown Minneapolis project.

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Back Story: C&W’s Ronn Thomas takes high-flying path to CRE

Commercial real estate is in Ronn Thomas’ blood, but his career took a circuitous and at times high-altitude route before he landed with the Bloomington office of Cushman & Wakefield. He now is a broker and senior director of C&W’s hospitality division.

His parents owned a commercial real estate company in Rochester, Minnesota, where he spent the latter part of his young life, so he always expected to end up in the business.

“I thought I would go to school and then take over,” Thomas said. “But when I graduated I knew Rochester was too small to go back to right away. My parents told me to go get some straight commission sales experience in the Twin Cities.”

As fate would have it, Thomas took a 15-year detour before he at last landed in real estate, first through a career selling wine wholesale and then through 12 years in commercial aviation.

Thomas joined C&W, then United Properties’ real estate shop, in April 2002.

Finance & Commerce recently sat down with Thomas to find out more.

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After 20 years of patience, Kharbanda family mobilizing Downtown East properties

For the Kharbanda family — an immigrant success story — the official groundbreaking Monday of their $100 million Ironclad apartment and hotel project began the second act of the family’s big downtown real estate vision.

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Newly acquired Bloomington hotel will be renovated, rebranded

Hawkeye Hotels and JR Hospitality have teamed up to buy and renovate the GuestHouse Inn and Suites in Bloomington.

They will convert the hotel, which previously was the Park Plaza, into a Courtyard by Marriott in the next 12 months, according to a news release from Coralville, Iowa-based Hawkeye Hotels.

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Hot Spots: Twin Cities 400 Tavern will lead a Minneapolis hotel transformation

Twin Cities 400 Tavern, a new bar and restaurant attached to the Ramada Plaza Minneapolis on Industrial Boulevard in Minneapolis, is on track to open on Oct. 23.

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Airbnb, Iowa reach agreement for hotel tax collections

Online home-sharing company Airbnb announced today it has reached an agreement with the Iowa Department of Revenue that will allow the company to collect and remit occupancy taxes on behalf of its Iowa hosts.

Under the agreement, effective Nov. 1, Airbnb will automatically collect and remit Iowa hotel and motel taxes directly to the department, which the company said will make the process “seamless and easy for both hosts and the state.” The agreement is expected to infuse hundreds of thousands of dollars of additional tax revenue into the state.

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Exchange Building in St. Paul sold, will become boutique hotel

A century-old office building at a prime downtown St. Paul corner, with a music conservatory as its major tenant, has been sold and will become a boutique hotel, the buyer announced Monday.

The Exchange Building, located on Exchange Street at Cedar Avenue and holding a place on the National Register of Historic Places, was bought by Northfield-based Rebound Hospitality from St. Paul businessman John Rupp.

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Cobalt plans redevelopment along South 70th Street in West Allis

Milwaukee-based developer Cobalt Partners LLC is planning a 100-room hotel as part of a mixed-use redevelopment project along South 70th Street in West Allis.

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