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The Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld, located at the corner of South International Drive and Westwood Boulevard, which sold in late May.
The Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld, located at the corner of South International Drive and Westwood Boulevard, which sold in late May. (hotel website)

A New York-based investment firm specializing in distressed hotel properties has bought the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld for at least $54.2 million, based on calculations made using the document taxes paid for the special warranty deed, which was filed with Orange County on May 19.

Located at the corner of South International Drive and Westwood Boulevard, the hotel was acquired by AWH Orlando Property, a Florida LLC created in March by New York-based AWH Partners. AWH is an affiliate of Winston Harton Holdings, a New York LLC specializing in acquiring distressed real estate assets through equity and debt, per its website.

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Winston Harton Holdings owns at least 16 hotels around the country, including the Sheraton Lake Buena Vista Resort, which it acquired in December 2010 for $22 million in partnership with New York-based real estate fund manager AREA Property Partners. The companies spent $25 million to renovate that hotel through Spring 2012.

Winston Harton Holdings did not respond to requests for comment on Thursday.

The Doubletree hotel, built in 1980, currently has 1,004 rooms. Its previous owner, a Delaware-based LLC named 10100 International Drive Owner which is managed by Atlanta-based UrbanAmerica Advisors, bought the hotel at the height of the pre-crisis real estate bubble in September 2006 for $76.7 million, or $76,394 per room.

The Doubletree's new estimated sale value of $54.2 million, or $53,984 per room, could actually be much higher.

That's because this figure only reflects the value of actual real estate on site. Tangible personal property inside the buildings, like furniture and other assets, are not factored into the documentary stamp tax posted on the deed.

This is not believed to have been a brokered transaction, commercial real estate brokers that specialize in Orlando hotels tell GrowthSpotter.

According to the Doubletree's website, the hotel covers 28 acres and boasts 60,000 square feet of indoor/outdoor meeting space, with three pools, a full-service day spa and fitness center among other amenities, and is an official SeaWorld partner hotel. 

The special warranty deed was prepared by Florentino L. Gonzalez, out of Shutts & Bowen LLP's Miami office.

bmoser@growthspotter.com or (407) 420-5685

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