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Convention Center Hotel

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The DC Convention Center Hotel...When Will It Be Started?

The District is embroiled in negotiations with landowner Robert Gould over a parcel of land at Massachusetts Avenue and 9th Street, N.W.. This property is the linchpin for the project, and most parts of an agreement have already been put in place. Unfortunately, the City Council is not acting swiftly enough to get this moving. Furthermore, one of the developers involved, Robert Johnson, isn't exactly known for moving quickly either (just look at the Hilton project in Norfolk). What is certain is that Washington is losing business for lack of a convention center hotel. There are hotels in the neighborhood, but not having a hotel directly connected to the Convention Center has already cost the city lots of convention business. It's time to get this project moving. If we are lucky, ground may be broken next winter. As for what this will look like, I have no idea. Johnson's other projects don't give me much hope that this will be more than a decorated box.

The Washington Post

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I agree. We need to get this going already. The project will be a huge catalyst for the convention center itself, then hopefully the surrounding area can improve. I hope it looks good.

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Are there any renderings for it? I am really hoping for this to go through, it would really help revitalize the area. :)

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I've been looking, I can't find anything. Hopefully it's not just a bland box, we need something nice. Not really all that related, but we also need to figure out what we're going to do for a city library. The MLK library is a disgrace, we either need to renovate it or, one of Tony Williams bigger legacies he wanted to have started was a city library. But one of the conflicts is land use for this project. If we build a library, it needs to be nice, b/c otherwise we could build residential and commercial space. So with this hotel, if we don't build something nice, we need to do something to help get that neighborhood developing quicker. We need a good return for whatever we decide to do.

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Wow, all this time I didn't know the convention center didn't have an anchor hotel. Yeah, that's definitely going to be needed. This may be the primary reason why the convention center hasn't yet lived up to its expectations, as this article points out.

As of right now, would you guys consider the Wardman Park Marriott to be DC's premiere hotel?

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Wow, all this time I didn't know the convention center didn't have an anchor hotel. Yeah, that's definitely going to be needed. This may be the primary reason why the convention center hasn't yet lived up to its expectations, as this article points out.

As of right now, would you guys consider the Wardman Park Marriott to be DC's premiere hotel?

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The Hay Adams near the white house I understand is a pretty expensive hotel, but I don't know if it is considered premiere. The area around the convention center needs to really be redeveloped. I always thought that the site was awkward because it is hemmed in by neighborhoods and projects. It will be really expensive (land acquisitions etc.) to build an adjacent Hotel. I wish the city had looked into building this mamoth project near Union Station where I understand the city owns acres of mostly empty land. I heard that this land is large enough for both the convention center and an attached hotel. Does anyone know the location of this parcel of land.

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I'm not exactly sure, but I'm pretty sure there are plans for much of the land area around Union Station. There is a large area behind the ATF HQ project if you are looking from NY Ave. I forget the name, but that's going to be a monster of a project. I think the convention center is in a decent location, but we just need to have the city get something done on their end and we need to regulate the corruption going on with landlords and developers in that area. I'm sure that that area can improve. And the Hay Adams is very nice I forgot about that one.

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Robert Johnson May Exit Convention Center Hotel Deal

The tortured convention center hotel project may be in trouble. Robert Johnson is likely to pull out of the deal, which wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing. What's worse is that Marriott is starting to show signs of cold feet as well. Johnson has also withdrawn from a project in Norfolk. The present situation with the convention center isn't going to be helped by the looming presence of the Gaylord Hotel at National Harbor which is expected to open next year. I realuize that this was a very complicated deal, but it is one which should have been pushed through. RLJ or no, there may be a hotel built hext to the convention center, but it is frustrating to see the delays.

The Washington Post

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I'm sure it's only a matter of time. It looks like Bob Johnson's reasons for pulling out were more personal in nature.

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D.C. Pins Hopes on Smaller Convention Center Hotel

It appears as though plans are proceeding for a slightly smaller Marriott hotel at the Washington Convention Center. This version clocks in at 1150 rooms, smaller than the 1400 rooms proposed earlier. This should still be enough, but I hope the hotel will not also be stripped of the amenities which would make it valuable to convention goers and planners alike. Most convention planners don't like to have to cast their nets too wide to house attendees at any given conference. As noted in the article, amenities like 24 hour pharmacies, restaurants and other shops must also follow in order to bring this area fully to life. As nice as the new convention center is, there just isn't a whole lot of life around it- yet. Douglas Jemal's idea for many smaller hotels sounds good, but it won't satisfy the needs of large conventions. If it's easier to house people at one or two hotels, the planners will do so every time.

The Washington Post

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Valid points were definitely raised in that article. The thing is, in a city as dense as DC, building a massive convention center isn't always something that can be done so conveniently as it regards amenities in the vicinity. I really think that a hotel servicing the convention center will then generate the shops, bars, retail, etc. that conventioneers will seek out. And I don't think that building a large hotel (1150 rooms is adequate, I think) and a few smaller hotels is necessarily a mutually exclusive arrangement.

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Point taken. The area should be able to absorb a number of smaller properties as well. The regeneration of stores and restaurants may take time, but all odf the land in this area is already owned by people who've been expecting this to happen for some time. There may be a shake-out with regards to their expectations for the eventual development of the property. I hope the mega-projects are interspersed with quirkier individual ones.

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I hope so as well. Also, a portion of one side of the ground floor of the hotel could be reserved for individual retail spaces.

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I thought I heard that the city was going to pitch in $130 Mil to make this project happen. Has anyone heard or read the same thing? Seems to me the city is spending its surplus like a drunken sailor.

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Fiscal responsibility in the District is, as yet, an unknown phenomenon. Fenty may be going in the right direction, but it may be too early to tell.

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Please note that the posts regarding the history of the convention hotel have been moved to the "off-topic" thread. This thread is specifically for the planned downtown D.C. convention hotel at the convention center.

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DC Convention Business Going Strong

If there was any doubt that the convention business in Washington is not stronger than ever, it should be dismissed now. The D.C. convention bureau reports that over a million room nights have been booked for the coming year. There should be no doubt that the new convention hotel is needed. More hotels are likely on the way, even as renovation projects and new properties continue to ratchet up the inventory. The introduction of the Gaylord National at National Harbor next year will, however, be a test of the strength of the market.

Hotel News Resource

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