RLJ Lodging Trust Sells Major Tampa Bay Resort

A hospitality company led by Tampa Bay Buccaneers Co-Chairman Bryan Glazer purchased the 362-key Vinoy Renaissance Resort & Golf Club in St. Petersburg, Fla., for a total of $188.5 million.
Renaissance Vinoy
Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf Club

SCG Hospitality LLC, led by Tampa Bay Buccaneers executive Bryan Glazer, has acquired the historic 362-key Vinoy Renaissance Resort & Golf Club in downtown St. Petersburg, Fla., and its adjacent marina and 18-hole golf course from RLJ Lodging Trust for $188.5 million.

The total included the contractual sales price of $185 million and the release of $3.5 million in member deposits, according to RLJ Lodging Trust.

Built in 1925 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the iconic pink Mediterranean Revival hotel has been transformed several times over the years and is currently undergoing a $50 million renovation and expansion of the hotel and the Vinoy Club, one of the most exclusive club memberships in the Tampa Bay region.

“The Vinoy is a crown jewel for the city of St. Petersburg and the entire Tampa Bay area. I look forward to the Vinoy being just as iconic on its upcoming 100th anniversary as the day it opened in 1925,” Glazer, the co-chairman of the Buccaneers NFL football team, said in a prepared statement.

Resort features

The Vinoy consistently ranks as one of Florida’s top resorts. The hotel features more than 32,000 square feet of indoor meeting and event space; a 74-slip marina; 12 tennis courts; an 18-hole, 71-par golf course on Snell Island; the Vinoy Clubhouse and pro shops and two swimming pools. Food and beverage offerings include Marchand’s Bar & Grill; the recently re-opened Paul’s Landing Marina Grill; the Vinoy Club Golf Grill on Snell Isle; and the Lobby Bar and Veranda Café.

Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf Club
Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf Club

SCG Hospitality hired The Plasencia Group, a Tampa-based hospitality investment advisory firm, to provide owner representation and development management services. The hotel will continue to be managed under a long-term agreement with Marriott.

CEO Lou Plasencia said the downtown waterfront resort is located near The Museum of Fine Arts, The Dali Museum, the James Museum and The Chihuly Collection, as well as a variety of restaurants and shops.

“We are very pleased with the highly accretive valuation this iconic hotel garnered, which further underscores our ability to maximize value from the sale of our non-core assets,” Leslie Hale, RLJ president & CEO, said in a prepared statement. “Our team has made tremendous progress towards achieving our strategic objectives this year and we are well-positioned to continue to unlock the embedded value in our portfolio.”

Hale took over as president & CEO on Aug. 22, following the retirement of Ross Bierkan. Hale, whose promotion had been announced in April, was previously the executive vice president, chief operating officer & chief financing officer.

HFF marketed the hotel on behalf of RLJ and arranged the sale. The HFF investment advisory team representing the seller included Senior Managing Director Daniel Peek, head of HFF’s hotel group; Managing Director Max Comess; Senior Managing Director Roland Merchant; Directors Preston Reid and Alexandra Lalos and Associate Wyatt Krapf.

“The Renaissance Vinoy is an iconic asset in the Florida resort market, and the repositioning begun by RLJ Lodging Trust will position it to continue its dominant presence in the Tampa Bay region for decades to come,” Peek said in a prepared statement.

RLJ’s Recent Dispositions

The sale comes more than a year after RLJ’s $1.2 billion merger with FelCor Lodging Trust Inc. Since the merger, RLJ, a Bethesda, Md.-based hospitality REIT, has been disposing of non-core assets. RLJ also recently sold the 152-key Double Tree Columbia Hotel in Columbia, Md., for $12.9 million. Other sales include the March disposition of the 364-key Sheraton Philadelphia Society Hill Hotel, which was sold to The Buccini/Pollin Group for $95.5 million. In December, RLJ sold the historic 383-key Fairmont Copley Plaza hotel in Boston for about $170 million. Two months later in February, the company sold Embassy Suites Marlborough, a 229-key all suites hotel in Marlborough, Mass., for $23.7 million.

The REIT focuses on owning premium-branded, focused-service and compact full-service hotels. The company’s portfolio consists of 152 hotels with approximately 29,490 guestrooms in 26 states and Washington, D.C. It also has an ownership interest in one unconsolidated hotel with 171 guestrooms.

Images courtesy of HFF