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Californian real estate investor Chih “John” Yuan Yu plans to invest around $16 million to build a Wyndham Garden hotel on two acres of shuttered property he bought last December near N. International Drive, and has yet to choose financing options, his development coordinator told GrowthSpotter.

Located at 5855 American Way, a cul de sac near the intersection of North I-Drive and S. Kirkman Road, Yu bought the parcel from Alltour America in late December for $2.6 million, with plans to eventually redevelop it into a new hotel.

Yu entered the Orlando hotel market in November 2015 by buying the Super 8 motel directly across the street (5900 American Way) for $7.5 million, and is now managing the property.

“We’ve selected the brand, Yu was familiar with Wyndham hotels and proved himself with the Super 8. We’re now in the design phase, have our renderings and are preparing our site plan,” said Kiran Patel, a local commercial broker who represented Yu on both acquisitions, and is now coordinating development of the new hotel.

“We’re going with the new prototype design of Wyndham Garden,” he continued. “Many Wyndham Gardens you’ve seen today are older property conversions, but this will be unique from the ground up.”

The hotel currently projects as a seven-story, 137-key property with 80,000 square feet overall, though that footprint and room count could change, Patel said. City zoning would allow for up to 20 stories on the site.

The select-service flag Wyndham Garden would follow seven other hotel properties now on American Way, with an eighth in development by Buffalo Lodging Associates, a Home2 Suites on land to the west of Super 8.

“There’s growth needed in this area of (I-Drive). Universal is going gangbusters, the Kirkman interchange is going to be huge,” Patel said. “We’re going to ride that wave.”

A Development Plan should be ready to submit to City of Orlando in the coming Fall, said Patel, who expects construction could start on the project in early 2017. Demolition of the now closed Alltour office would be necessary first.

Private financing and a traditional construction loan are being considered, with choices yet to be made, Patel said.

Architect is Thomas D. Adams of Harter-Adams, P.A., out of Winter Park.

This hotel would be the second in Greater Orlando with the Wyndham Garden flag, following the Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista on Hotel Plaza Boulevard.

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