Hotels in Vail nearly ready to reopen; Avon proposal is far less certain
By the numbers
285: Rooms at the Hotel Talisa
About 100: Rooms at the Doubletree Inn.
170: Proposed rooms at the proposed Marriott Residence Inn
19: Proposed rooms at the Mountain View Residences.
Source: Town of Vail, Vail Daily staff reports
EAGLE COUNTY — The valley’s hotel scene is changing, if on a sometimes-delayed schedule.
The town of Vail went through the 2016-17 ski season without two large hotels, the former Cascade Resort and the former Holiday Inn. Together, those properties add up to nearly 450 rooms. Both hotels are nearing the end of complete renovations.
The Cascade has re-branded under new ownership as the Hotel Talisa, while the old Holiday Inn is re-branding as a DoubleTree Inn. Both moves are an attempt to attract a higher-end customer.
The Hotel Talisa owners initially announced the hotel would reopen in time for Christmas 2016. Then Christmas became January, and January became March.
The Vail Community Development Department is responsible for building permits, inspections and, ultimately, the certificate of occupancy that allows people to use new residential or commercial construction.
Department director George Ruther said his staff has been working with the owners of both the Hotel Talisa and the DoubleTree. Ruther said the existing-but-renovated hotels should open some time between mid-October and the Nov. 17 opening of Vail Mountain.
Ruther said it’s important for the town to get those hotels open.
“Each one of those rooms generates lodging and sales taxes for the town,” Ruther said. “They’re also important venues for businesses.”
While the existing hotels are on a somewhat solid schedule, that schedule is more open for two new hotels.
Developer Peter Dumon earlier this year received Vail Town Council approval on a handful of zoning variances for a Marriott Residence Inn at the former site of the Roost Lodge. When built, that project will add 170 hotel rooms to the town’s inventory, as well as nearly 100 deed-restricted apartments.
In a previous email interview, Dumon wrote that he hopes to start construction either this fall or in the spring of 2018. To do that, the project will need a final approval of a development agreement.
Ruther said that development agreement — which details specific requirements for the project — is still being negotiated. But, he said, the Vail Town Council is scheduled to review, and perhaps approve, that agreement at its Sept. 19 meeting.
A much smaller hotel is also in the planning stages.
The Vail Town Council in August approved the Mountain View Residences project. That project, to be built just east of the Vail Village parking structure, would create a mix of condos, deed-restricted apartments and 19 hotel rooms.
That project has been delayed because of an error in the way the public was notified of a meeting of the Vail Planning and Environmental Commission. Because the error was for that board, Ruther said the proposal has to go back to the planning group for another hearing.
While the project “remains largely the same” as the one already approved, developers need to take another trip through the town’s process.
A less-certain plan
A more speculative project is in Avon.
In May, Denver-based developer Branco Mocevic announced plans to built a 200-unit hotel-condominium project on property along U.S. Highway 6 just east of The Ascent condominiums.
At the time, Mocevic said he expected to deliver initial project plans to Avon officials in early June. He also expected the approval process to take as long as 10 months, with a construction schedule of “at least” two years. Mocevic said he planned to use his own construction company for the project.
As of Friday, though, the large for-sale sign on the property remained in place.
Broker Mike Budd said the property remains under contract, and due diligence continues to complete the sale. The expected closing could come in October, Budd said.
While the property is under contract, town of Avon planner Matt Pielsticker wrote in an email that no project plans have been submitted, nor have any conversations been held with developers.
A far more certain project is beginning in Edwards.
The Inn at Riverwalk opened in 1997, and the owners this fall are launching an extensive renovation project.
According to a release, the elevators, corridors and the 60 rooms will all be updated. The lobby, pool area and fitness center will also be updated. The project will close the hotel for the fall, and the owners intend to have the project ready for guests by Christmas.
Vail Daily Business Editor Scott Miller can be reached at 970-748-2930, firstname.lastname@example.org and @scottnmiller.