The Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Rochester has been sold. Morgan Management and Christa Development are buying the property for $16 million. They’re spending another $15 million on renovations to the interior and exterior.
The deal closes next week.
“It’s going to be outside renovation, paint, LED lighting, inside redone from top to bottom,” said Bob Morgan of Morgan Management. “We plan on doing something with the restaurant, new theme. Once you do that, it will definitely turn around.”
The Hyatt had an infamous beginning in Rochester. Construction started in 1985, but halted when the developers abandoned the project. The unfinished highrise marred the city’s skyline for years. Finally, government and business leaders worked out a way to finance the deal and save the project. The hotel opened in 1992.
The Hyatt has 336 rooms and 400,000 square feet. It is not profitable right now.
“It’s a tired hotel right now. Fifteen years, nothing has been done to it. It’s been very tired,” said Morgan.
Morgan and Christa hope to do to the Hyatt what they did to the Strathallan. The renovated and expanded East Avenue hotel is now booming.
“We love the real estate. We love the location. We’re in the hotel business. We feel that there’s a need for more Class A hotels as we’ve turned the Strathallan around. There’s demand for rooms,” said Morgan.
Morgan said the Hyatt was made more attractive by the prospect of the city renovating the convention center.
Morgan believes in downtown Rochester. He’s a partner in Tower280, the former Midtown Tower, where the first residents moved in this month. He’s also a partner in Legacy Tower.
Morgan is excited about construction starting this summer on Rivers Edge apartments behind Dinosaur Bar-B-Que on Court St. and South Ave. The modern building will have 110 apartments and first-floor retail.
“I’m developing in different cities, Pittsburgh, Cleveland. I’ve watched what, how those cities have transformed and I just feel that downtown, this is the last city that has not come back,” Morgan said.
Renovations on the Hyatt should begin in about six months, after designers and architects submit plans. Thursday, the county indusutrial development agency will vote on tax breaks for the project.