Western International is entering the Florida market as developer and landowner for an extended stay hotel in the ChampionsGate-Reunion submarket in Davenport. The Marriott and Hilton franchisee will build its sixth Home2 Suites with this project on County Road 532 across from Reunion Village.
Mostly made up of residential communities, the area has seen interest from developers looking to build hotels and multi-use shopping in the past five years that didn’t come to fruition. Those “rooftops” – and area attractions such as nearby golf courses and Championsgate Sports Complex and the I-4 corridor – are perfect for an extended-stay hotel such as Home2 Suites, HREC Vice President Paul Sexton told GrowthSpotter.
“The Home2 brand is one of Hilton’s flagship brands. Everyone seems to like it. Banks like, developers like it and guests like it,” Sexton said.
Texas-based Western International partnered with Orlando real estate attorney Joe Ort in May. Ort led a group of investors as Blackwater RE Investors in buying 46 acres for $2.73 million in 2017. They sold 16 acres in 2018 to Indiana-based Watermark Residential, which recently completed the 326-unit Thrive by Watermark apartments.
The hotel developer paid $2 million for two acres on C.R. 532, just southeast of the Interstate 4 interchange, Katie Layton of Western International told GrowthSpotter. The deal just closed, she said.
“The Home2 is a product we have had a lot of success with,” said Layton, who is assistant to Western International President Michael Mahoney. “We think it will be successful in that area as well.”
Home2 Suites guest suites feature separate sleeping and living areas, with a kitchenette equipped with full-sized appliances. Induction burner cooktops are available upon request at no extra cost. The hotels typically include a 24-hour fitness center and a saltwater pool among other amenities.
“The draw of the Home2 – it’s almost successful anywhere. At least that has been our experience,” Layton said. “It’s taken off. It’s a lifestyle brand that seems to be very popular with the millennium age group.”
Extended-stay and all-suite hotels are also drawn to sites that are in close proximity to hospitals. Orlando Health plans to build a hospital across the street, at Reunion Village. The brand is also adding new flags in Winter Garden and Mount Dora.
Texas Western expects to start construction on the 128-room hotel in the first quarter of 2022 with an expected opening in the spring or summer. The land has been graded and a parking waiver granted that allows the developers to create 134 spaces total instead of the land development code required 160 spaces, Peterson said.
Phoenix-based One! Architecture submitted the preliminary site plan.
“This is a terrific idea,” Sexton said. “Most of the demand down there is going to be leisure demand. A lot of people down here are seasonal owners or seasonal visitors. Those guys attract a lot of their friends. … Home2 being more extended stay is a perfect product for this market. Friends and family or people who do come for golf for several days or so. They like that kind of style of hotel room, where they can maybe make their own breakfast.”