The CoCo Key Water Resort on North International Drive is on the cusp of being acquired by Fort Lauderdale-based hotel investor InSite Group, a company that co-owns the B Resort & Spa located near Downtown Disney, one of the company's lead executives confirmed for GrowthSpotter on Friday.
The CoCo Key will continue operating under that brand flag until its current franchise agreement expires, said Christopher Tompkins, corporate vice president for InSite's B Hotels & Resorts brand.
CoCo Key could later be converted into a smaller format of B Resort that fits the I-Drive property's two-story, 391-room infrastructure. Tompkins did not comment further on a deal that has yet to be finalized, and the hotel's general manager declined to confirm Friday when the CoCo Key brand contract will expire.
The property is currently owned by Orlando-based CNL Financial, one of 67 properties in CNL's Lifestyle Properties REIT. CoCo Key is being marketed for sale as that Lifestyle portfolio reaches its liquidity event.
A CNL spokeswoman could not confirm sale of the property last week. A price near $15 million has been estimated for the property for GrowthSpotter by local real estate players. If accurate, that would fall below the $19.1 million that CNL paid for it in May 2008.
CoCo Key Water Resort has nine locations nationally that include its branded indoor water parks at hotels in Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey and Ohio. The Orlando location at 7400 I-Drive is the only one with an outdoor water park.
InSite Group has acquired multiple hotels in Florida in recent years through joint ventures and redeveloped them with the B Hotels & Resorts brand, under which it currently has four properties.
Most recently in December 2014, the company acquired the 487-room Yankee Clipper Sheraton Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel, with full renovation and re-launch expected by 2016.
InSite bought the 243-room Continental Bayside Hotel in downtown Miami via JV in September 2011, renovating and renaming it under a new full-service value brand, b2.
In December 2011, InSite bought the 394-room Royal Plaza in Lake Buena Vista via JV, which it rebranded as B Resort & Spa near Downtown Disney, completing renovations there in October 2014.
InSite has bought, renovated and rebranded at least one property only to turn and resell at the end of an established investment cycle.
The company acquired a vacant Fort Lauderdale Holiday Inn in 2009 through JV, then reopened it in March 2011 as B Ocean Fort Lauderdale, the first property in its B Hotels & Resorts brand. It then sold the 240-room hotel in June 2014 for $65 million to Hospitality Properties Trust, which rebranded it as Sonesta Fort Lauderdale.
The pending CoCo Key Resort sale is just the latest in a series of hospitality sales in Greater Orlando this year that has the region on pace for more than $2 billion in hotel property transactions this year, GrowthSpotter reported in mid-June.
In the I-Drive corridor, hotel deals in recent months include: