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Concord Street Resort Hotel

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Major Hotel planned on Concord St. SPA property

Lowe Enterprises wants to buy the prime Concord Street site and the neighboring SPA office building as part of development anchored by a 225-room hotel. Both properties are owned by the state maritime agency.

Lowe was among a dozen developers that sought to buy the side-by-side properties on Charleston Harbor. The SPA has not disclosed the purchase price, but it is estimated to be at least $40 million.

Plans include indoor and outdoor dining options, including an open-air cafe, a full-service spa, a rooftop bar and lounge, and a continuation of the city’s walking path along Charleston Harbor. Architect renderings submitted to the city also show a pool, fitness center, ballroom, meeting rooms and ground-floor retail space.

The property would be managed by Destination Hotels, a Lowe subsidiary that manages more than 40 resorts in 18 states. They include the Lowe-owned Wild Dunes Resort on the Isle of Palms.


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SPA sells HQ building for $38mm

The State Ports Authority's $38 million sale of its headquarters building overlooking Charleston Harbor will rank among the top prices ever fetched for an office building on Charleston's peninsula.

Nearly a year after announcing plans to sell its waterfront headquarters, the SPA is expected to close the deal Wednesday with Los Angeles-based hotel developer Lowe Enterprises.

The transaction received final approval last week from the state's Fiscal Accountability Authority, which disclosed the sale price that until now had been a closely held secret.

Lowe is buying the SPA's building at 176 Concord Street and an adjoining parcel where the Fleet Landing Restaurant now operates. Lowe plans to tear down the existing office structure and build a luxury resort on the property. Fleet Landing will continue to operate until its lease expires in 2024.

The SPA, meanwhile, is moving ahead with plans to build a new headquarters at its Wando Welch Terminal in Mount Pleasant. The authority has filed a permit application with the Army Corps of Engineers showing a four-story building with room for 424 parking spaces on a 19.4-acre parcel at the container terminal. the new offices will have more conference rooms and meeting spaces than the SPA's current location. The town of Mount Pleasant last month reviewed a conceptual plan for the new building.

Lowe, which also owns the Wild Dunes resort on Isle of Palms, is planning a 225-room hotel with indoor and outdoor dining options. a full-service spa, a rooftop bar and lounge, and a continuation of the city’s walking path along Charleston Harbor. Architect renderings submitted to the city also show a pool, fitness center, ballroom, meeting rooms and ground-floor retail space.

After the sale is finalized, the SPA plans to lease back the Concord Street property for up to two years while the new headquarters complex is built. Lowe plans to have the hotel ready for operation by 2020.

The SPA announced plans to sell its Concord Street site last January, drawing 12 potential bidders with a variety of plans to reuse the property. The SPA said Lowe “submitted the best financial offer for the property.”

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Concord St. SPA HQ sale closes

Lowe, which plans to build a 225-room luxury hotel on the Concord Street site, closed on the purchase of the SPA's headquarters Thursday. Lowe paid $38 million for two parcels totaling 6.5 acres, including 1.75 acres of developable highlands. The property has unobstructed view of the harbor and Atlantic Ocean.

Redevelopment of the property will be a windfall for local and state governments, which stand to gain $6.3 million in new revenue from property, accommodations, sales and other taxes as well as business license and other fees. The SPA, a state agency, is exempt from paying such taxes and fees on its property.

All told, the SPA received a dozen offers for its headquarters, ranging from Lowe's purchase price to a $10.8 million bid from a local group that wanted to renovate the existing building for commercial office space. Five offers were from hotel developers and four bidders did not say what they planned to do with the property. The other proposals were for a condominium project and an unspecified public amenity.

The developer has agreed to build a continuation of the city's walking path along Charleston Harbor, which begins at the adjacent Waterfront Park.

Lowe also applied for, and received, special zoning that will allow it to exceed normal height limits in the area in exchange for street-level public spaces, such as shops and restaurants. The zoning increases the height limit overall to 56 feet - from the normal 50-foot limit - and allows up to 25 percent of the building to reach as high as 70 feet.

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