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The Adam's Mark in Charlotte Converting from
 a 613-room Hotel to a 308-room Boutique
By Stan Choe, The Charlotte Observer, N.C., The Charlotte Observer, N.C.
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News

Dec. 17, 2005 - The Adam's Mark hotel will get a new life in February. The uptown hotel had been facing an uncertain future, with its managers telling employees last month their jobs would officially end Dec. 23.

On Friday, the hotel's owners said they hired a New York boutique-hotel owner to turn one of the Adam's Mark's two towers into the trendy Blake Hotel.

Rooms will be geared toward "a hip, professional clientele," the owners said in a statement, with wireless Internet, flat-screen TVs and stereos with iPod docking stations. It is scheduled to open Feb. 1, with nightly room rates between $129 and $355.

Neither the owners, the Chetrit Group, nor the operator, Amsterdam Hospitality Group, could be reached for comment Friday. Plans for the second tower are unclear, but the Chetrit Group said in its statement the Blake Hotel is the first phase of a larger-scale redevelopment plan for the neighborhood surrounding the hotel.

The Chetrit Group purchased the hotel and the neighboring Cameron Brown Building in July.

Mohammad Jenatian, president of the Greater Charlotte Hospitality and Tourism Alliance, said his understanding is that some Adam's Mark employees will continue to work at the hotel as it changes over. The others will join a labor pool that has a lot of demand now for hospitality workers, he said.

The Adam's Mark conversion from a 613-room hotel to a 308-room boutique will help the center city's and Mecklenburg County's hotel industry two-fold, Jenatian said: It will cut supply of rooms and raise average rates.

The hotel industry in the county has been slowly improving the last few years, with a healthier economy meaning more business travel.

But room occupancy and average daily rates are still below where Jenatian would like: 61.3 percent and $66 . Ideal, he said, would be 65 percent and $80. But the current numbers are still improvements from last year.

The hotel's re-opening also is good news for fans of the CIAA college basketball tournaments, which run in late February and early March at Charlotte Bobcats Arena. The tournament is expected to draw 110,000 fans, and the Blake Hotel is working to confirm reservations made for the Adam's Mark, said Molly Hedrick, spokeswoman for the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority.

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Copyright (c) 2005, The Charlotte Observer, N.C.

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