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New hotel tower at EPICENTRE to feature two Marriott brands

Includes European-style AC Hotel, among first to be built in US.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – McKibbon Hotel Management has formed a partnership to build a hotel tower at the EPICENTRE uptown, featuring an upscale AC Hotel, a Marriott-branded concept that caters to cosmopolitan, urban travelers in a stylish, contemporary and sophisticated setting.

In addition to the AC Hotel with 182 rooms, the new tower will also have a 120-room Residence Inn. Both brands are in the Marriott International portfolio. The project is expected to begin construction in early 2015.

Headquartered in Tampa, FL, McKibbon owns and operates more than 80 mid- and upscale hotels in 13 states, including three properties in Charlotte: Residence Inn by Marriott Southpark, and Homewood Suites and Hampton Inn by Hilton in University City.

McKibbon’s partner is the team of Vision Ventures and Mount Vernon Asset Management, two local, diversified real estate firms that together owned and operated EPICENTRE since 2010 and recently sold the property to Los-Angeles-based CIM Group for $130.5 million. Vision Ventures and Mount Vernon Asset Management also own the Ballantyne Village retail center and upscale Rosewood condominiums in Charlotte.

AC Hotels originated in Europe in 1998. Marriott International and AC Hotels formed a joint venture in 2011. The portfolio today includes 80 hotels located in Spain, Italy, Portugal and France. The Charlotte location will be among the first AC Hotels to be built in the United States, with others planned in Kansas City, New Orleans, New York City and Miami.

The Residence Inn is one of 18 brands managed by Marriott International, Inc. Launched in 1975, the chain operates 650 extended stay hotels in four continents. The new location will be one of five existing Residence Inn hotels in the Charlotte area.

“Our due diligence affirms that hospitality is the highest and best use for this site, and we are excited about bringing such a unique asset to the market,” said Paul Picarazzi, principal of Vision Ventures. “The synergy between our team and the McKibbon Group will be evident in the finished product. This will be the first AC hotel as well as first dual-branded hotel development in Charlotte, and a dynamic addition to EPICENTRE.”

Marriott International describes AC Hotels as having “innovative spaces of freedom and comfort, with a style that defines the most contemporary hospitality.” This hotel targets “travelers searching for a design-led hotel in a great location. Sleek, sophisticated European inspired aesthetics bring the culture of the location alive to support our guests’ experience.” Interiors offer “sophisticated furnishings” including curated, museum-quality artifacts, and “dramatic retail-inspired lighting.”

“As Charlotte evolves into a tier-one destination, we must continue to enhance our hotel inventory,” said Michael Smith, President & CEO of Charlotte Center City Partners. “We are grateful to McKibbon Hotel Management, Vision Ventures and Mt. Vernon; Asset Management for their investment at this central destination for hospitality with direct connectivity to transit. These new hotels at the EPICENTRE will be a tremendous asset to Uptown Charlotte.”

Photo caption: The EPICENTRE uptown, in Charlotte, N.C.

Tatiana Rokou

Tatiana is the news coordinator for TravelDailyNews Media Network (traveldailynews.gr, traveldailynews.com and traveldailynews.asia). Her role includes monitoring the hundreds of news sources of TravelDailyNews Media Network and skimming the most important according to our strategy.

She holds a Bachelor's degree in Communication & Mass Media from Panteion University of Political & Social Studies of Athens and she has been editor and editor-in-chief in various economic magazines and newspapers.

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