One of Europe’s hottesthotel concepts is coming to the United States with the renovation andrebranding by NewcrestImage of the historic Cotton Exchange Hotel in NewOrleans. The company is investing $10million to make this property among the first in the country to operate underthe AC Hotels by Marriott brand.
“We are transforming ahistoric hotel into a new, hip and urban environment,” said Mehul Patel,Chairman and CEO of NewcrestImage. “Every detail, from the design to the service will provide our guestswith a memorable travel experience that is unique and authentic.”
According to Patel, theproperty will bring together a sleek, sophisticated, cosmopolitan look with thelatest in technology and the best in amenities -- all while respecting the location’sunique heritage and character as a designated National Historic Landmark.
“New Orleans is a vibrantdestination that is ideal to help us establish the AC Hotels by Marriottexperience on this side of the Atlantic,” said Callette Nielsen, Vice PresidentAC Hotels by Marriott. “The historic building will have a wow factor in its ownright, and we are thrilled to help launch the next exciting chapter of thisunique hotel.”
NewcrestImage is scheduledto start renovation during the first quarter of 2014, with completion expectedwithin six months.
The enhanced hotel willfeature 220 rooms, 3,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, a rooftop pool, and alibrary that serves as a business center. In the lobby, the AC Lounge will offer guests a full breakfast buffet,then later during the day it will serve small food plates and beverages,including cocktails, craft beers, and fine wines.
The AC Hotels by Marriottconcept was launched in Europe in 2011 as a joint venture between MarriottInternational and Spain’s AC Hotels. Thebrand has a portfolio of nearly 80 hotels in Spain, Italy, Portugal, and Francewhich together have almost 8,500 rooms.
Earlier this year, Marriott International announced its plans toimport AC Hotels by Marriott to the United States and the New Orleans propertywill be among the country’s first sites for the brand.
“The French Quarter is one of the country’soldest urban neighborhoods, known for its artistic ambience and itsEuropean-influenced architecture,” added Patel. “The rebranding will capture this special local style and spirit toenhance and elevate a guest’s stay.”
NewcrestImage acquired theCotton Exchange Hotel in June of 2013 for $17.8 million, purchasing it out offoreclosure through a sealed bid process.
Currently, Dallas-basedNewcrestImage owns and operates 16 hotel properties, with five properties underconstruction and another two real estate properties in various stages ofdevelopment.