Luxury hotel replacing CCN Post Office

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Highlights:

  • Hotel plan unveiled for Cheery Creek North.
  • $60 million development is at 245 Columbine st.
  • BMC and Sage tapped for project.

What was first proposed to be a seven-story office building on the former U.S. Postal site in the heart of Cherry Creek North, now will be a $60 million, seven-story, luxury hotel with restaurant and retail space.

Denver based BMC Investments and Sage Hospitality  BMC and Sage recently entered into a joint venture with Sullivan Group and Elevation Group for the development of 245 Columbine, officials announced on Tuesday.
BMC and Sage will serve as the joint-venture managing members and co-developers on the prime site.

“This is the premier site available in Cherry Creek for a high-end hotel, and we feel that there is tremendous demand for a project of this caliber,” said Matt Joblon, managing partner of BMC.

”As with our Steele Creek project on First and Steele, we will work closely with the City Council and the neighborhood to ensure we deliver an exceptional project that highlights Cherry Creek.”

Steele Creek is a planned 12-story, 250-unit luxury apartment building.

Sage Hospitality, will co-develop and independently brand the 150-room luxury hotel featuring a roof-top pool at 245 Columbine.

Sage Restaurant Group, who developed Second Home Kitchen + Bar also in Cherry Creek, plans to implement one of its newest brands in part of the available restaurant and retail space.

BMC and Sage have hired architecture firms klipp/a division of gkkworks and JG Johnson Architects of Denver to design the building.  Renowned New York-based interior designer Robert McKinley will fashion the interior of the hotel.

“We plan to create something totally unique and indigenous that will fit in with the Cherry Creek vibe,” said Walter Isenberg, President and CEO of Sage.

“Sage has developed exciting, independent brands in Colorado such as The Crawford Hotel at Denver’s Union Station, opening in July in LoDo.  We plan to bring that excitement and sense of place to Cherry Creek with this project.”
Both companies will work closely with the Cherry Creek North Neighborhood Association to ensure that the project meets the goals and objectives of the neighborhood and is consistent with its character and context.  The co-development team of BMC and Sage was formed to leverage their proven track record in financing, developing and operating, first-class hospitality projects.

About a year ago, the association filed a civil lawsuit against the city of Denver over its decision to change the zoning to allow a seven-story office building at 245 Columbine St.

The lawsuit alleges the city council and planning board ignored evidence showing that the project could cause an increase in traffic and … inadequate parking” and also that the zoning change didn’t meet the guidelines of the Cherry Creek Area Plan, according to the lawsuit filed March 19.
It also alleged he city council decision “was an abuse of discretion, arbitrary and capricious.”

A judge ruled in favor of the city in January.

“It’s been a long trek, with the rezone and the lawsuit, but I think we are going to end up with the best results with having BMC and Sage on board,” said Brent Farber, principal of the Elevation Group.
He said a luxury hotel makes more sense in today’s market than an office building.

“I’m sure some people will be disappointed we are no longer pursuing an office building, but markets change and a luxury hotel is what makes the most sense,” Farber said.

He said the only major, first-class hotel in the neighborhood is the nearby JW Marriott. There is also the Inn at Cherry Creek, “but I think that only has about 30 rooms,” Farber said. “The area is definitely under-hoteled,” Farber said.
“I don’t think this will be the last hotel to move forward. I expect we will see another three or four more break ground. The neighborhood can certainly handle more than two first-class, luxury hotels.”

Farber said he didn’t know if the hotel will be LEED-certified.

“I know Walter will look at it, as he does with everything he develops,” Farber said. “The office building was gong to be LEED-certified. I know it will be energy-efficient and be constructed in a sustainable way, but it is probably too early to say whether they will actually seek LEED certification.”

Farber said there aren’t two better companies than BMC and Sage to bring the development across the finish line.

“We’ve known Walter (Isenberg) forever and frankly, no one develops and operates hotels better than he does,” Farber said. “He simply is the best in the business.”
He also has known Joblon of a long time.

“Matt and Walter really are the right guys for this venture,” Farber said.

“It is an exciting deal. They both have great track records and we could’t be happier that they will kind of lead this project and get it up and running.”

Interested in buying a home in Cherry Creek North? Please visit COhomefinder.com.

Have a story idea or real estate tip? Contact John Rebchook at JRCHOOK@gmail.com. InsideRealEstateNews.com is sponsored by Universal Lending, Land Title Guarantee and 8z Real Estate. To read more articles by John Rebchook, subscribe to the Colorado Real Estate Journal.

 

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John Rebchook

John Rebchook has more than 30 years of experience in writing and communications. As the Real Estate Editor for the Rocky Mountain News, he wrote about residential and commercial real estate for 26 years. He has won numerous awards for business stories and columns that he wrote, both as an individual and part of teams. In addition to real estate, he also covered economic development, banking and financing, the airlines, and cable TV for the Rocky. In addition, he was one of the original freelance writers for GlobeSt.com, covering commercial real estate for the Internet publication.

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