Ashford Hospitality Prime Acquires Chicago Hotel for $153M

Ashford Hospitality Prime has acquired a 415-room hotel in the desirable Gold Coast submarket of Chicago from The Blackstone Group for $153 million.

ASHFORDAshford Hospitality Prime has acquired Sofitel Chicago Water Tower Hotel, a 415-room hotel in the desirable Gold Coast submarket of Chicago from The Blackstone Group for $153 million.

Jones Lang LaSalle’s Hotels & Hospitality Group arranged the sale and also secured $80 million of acquisition financing on behalf of the property’s new owners.

“The hotel was highly appealing to the market due to its superior brand offerings and its highly desirable fee simple tenure in one of Chicago’s top neighborhoods—the Gold Coast and its strong operating performance,” Adam McGaughy, JLL’s Managing Director, told Commercial Property Executive. “Its position in the luxury segment offers tremendous upside as the market continues to recover.”

Located at 20 E. Chestnut St., the Sofitel Chicago Water Tower Hotel consists of 415 rooms including 32 suites and one presidential suite. The hotel has more than 10,000 square feet of meeting space including a 4,592-square-foot ballroom, eight meeting rooms and a private dining room with open kitchen. It also includes the luxury restaurant, Cafe des Architectes.

The acquisition by Ashford Prime clearly matched its strategy aimed at purchasing luxury class hotels in top U.S.-based lodging markets that meets or exceeds its RevPAR threshold requirements.

“Aside from being our first acquisition since the spin-off from Ashford Trust, the purchase of the Sofitel Chicago Water Tower is an extremely attractive transaction for Ashford Prime,” Monty Bennett, Ashford Prime’s chairman & CEO, said in a company statement. “We have gained a high RevPAR, luxury hotel in the heart of Chicago; a key U.S. gateway market.”

Designed by French architect Jean-Paul Viguier, the hotel is a 32-floor prism of glass featuring stunning views of Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline. It is located just minutes from the exclusive shopping of the Magnificent Mile.

“The Gold Coast submarket of downtown Chicago benefits from its positioning as the premier residential and luxury boutique shopping destination in all of the downtown,” McGaughy said. “This location allows the hotel to benefit from strong corporate, leisure and international demand, seven days a week and 12 months a year.”