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The Voice of Reason

New Haven's Hotel Boom

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http://www.courant.com/business/hc-hotel12...81.story?page=1

NEW HAVEN - As Paul McGowan attempts to transform a bygone motor inn at 1157 Chapel St. into a glassy boutique hotel, he's got countless details to fret about, from the pace of construction to the brand of shampoo he'll leave on the bathroom sink.

One thing he doesn't worry about is the location: It's square in the heart of Yale University, the city's main magnet for out-of-town visitors.

Yale refers visitors to several local hotels and licenses or lends its name to a few of them, including the Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale, a 306-room full-service hotel near the green that is generally regarded as the city's top hotel.

But the Omni is often full and that has made it a prime target for emerging rivals.

"We'll be competing mainly with the Omni," said McGowan, a former Starwood Hotels and Resorts executive whose development and consulting firm, Hospitality 3, bought the no-frills Colony Inn a year ago for nearly $7 million, then closed it for a multimillion-dollar overhaul that will add two stories and put a sleek new face on the street.

The five-story, circa-1963 building sits directly across from the Yale School of Art and just west of the School of Architecture. The Yale Repertory Theater and the university's two major art museums are one block east. A slow walker could reach some of the city's most popular restaurants in five minutes or less, as well as several cafes and bookstores, a news shop and a haberdasher.

"That is a good starting point," said McGowan, who has hired KPMB Architects of Toronto to design the hotel. The firm handled renovations of Yale's Sprague Memorial Hall in 2003.

The reinvention of 1157 Chapel is the most ambitious hotel project in New Haven in a decade and one sorely needed to meet demand, estimated to be at least 200 to 300 rooms above the 1,310 rooms now in the city, according to local real estate experts.

But McGowan's project, which will add 39 rooms to the 86 the Colony already had, for 125 in all, isn't even the biggest hotel project on the horizon.

Four blocks away, on College Street, Centerplan Development of Hartford plans to build a 19-story structure where it envisions a 250-room "four or five-star" hotel, 124 luxury condominiums and ground-floor retail. Robert A.M. Stern, dean of Yale's architecture school, has been hired as the designer. The project is expected to break ground next year and open in 2011.

*SNIP*

Developers' interest in downtown New Haven as a place for hotels coincides with their interest in building new apartment and condominium projects there, some on a grand scale. Fairfield developer Bruce Becker is planning to break ground this winter on a 29-story apartment project at Chapel and State Streets intended to include 485 units...

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Interesting article I thought. It includes info on other projects going on and really gives you the sense of the developments that are underway, planned or even envisioned. Seems to me that New haven is fast becoming a prime city on the fringe of NYC. It will likely not ever get too much office developemtn like Stamford, but residentially, and recreationally NH is in a great position.

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1. You're not supposed to copy and paste entire news articles, just only a couple paragraphs max. And you're also supposed to comment on it.

2. Nice to see some stuff here for Southwestern Connecticut, should be in the subforum though.

But anyway, nice to hear New Haven is doing good. I'm not sure what plans, if any, they are doing for the Coliseum site, but there's plenty of potential to do something good. It's already the most vibrant nightlife in the state. Has a major university with Yale. All these hotels coming up or planned are great, means people are coming. Let's give em more to see. If Hartford doesn't want to get its act together (Mayor Perez), here's a place that can become Connecticut's premier city.

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1. You're not supposed to copy and paste entire news articles, just only a couple paragraphs max. And you're also supposed to comment on it.

2. Nice to see some stuff here for Southwestern Connecticut, should be in the subforum though.

But anyway, nice to hear New Haven is doing good. I'm not sure what plans, if any, they are doing for the Coliseum site, but there's plenty of potential to do something good. It's already the most vibrant nightlife in the state. Has a major university with Yale. All these hotels coming up or planned are great, means people are coming. Let's give em more to see. If Hartford doesn't want to get its act together (Mayor Perez), here's a place that can become Connecticut's premier city.

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New Haven County for the purposes of this place is Southwest. Well, maybe not Meriden area. New Haven and Waterbury, yeah. Figure I give the heads up before a mod finds this, I'm nicer.

Still exciting times for New Haven though.

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New Haven County for the purposes of this place is Southwest. Well, maybe not Meriden area. New Haven and Waterbury, yeah. Figure I give the heads up before a mod finds this, I'm nicer.

Still exciting times for New Haven though.

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