|By Eric Anderson, Albany Times Union,
N.Y.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News
Feb. 26, 2008 - SARATOGA SPRINGS -- Think of it as a home with room service.
The more than $40 million complex going up on High Rock Avenue in downtown Saratoga Springs includes a 123-room Hampton Inn & Suites hotel and 38 High Rock Condominium, which will feature 45 condominiums.
If all goes as planned, the 6-story hotel will open at the beginning of June, in time for the city's rush of summer tourists. The adjacent 6-story condominium complex, with the three lower floors dedicated to indoor parking for both hotel and condo residents, will be open before the end of the year, said Michael Hoffman, one of the developers. The two buildings will be connected so condo residents won't have to go outside to reach the hotel.
Hoffman's Turf Hotels and homebuilder Bette & Cring are developing the project.
Hoffman says the opportunity for residents to use hotel services is a big plus.
"It can include as much maid service, or as little, as you could want," he said Monday. "There's going to be a restaurant in the commercial space that certainly can do room service," he said.
Residents also will be able to use the swimming pool and fitness facilities, he said.
While Hampton Inn is a limited-service hotel, Hoffman nevertheless envisions concierge service that can help both condo residents and hotel guests with tickets, reservations and other arrangements.
The condominiums, with one-, two- and three-bedroom configurations, range from $400,000 to $1.5 million. The developers haven't yet received approval from the state Attorney General's office to begin formally offering them for sale. But Hoffman said he's pleased so far with the interest shown in the project.
He declined to put an exact figure on the total cost of the hotel and condominiums.
"Clearly, the hotel is upwards of $20 million," Hoffman said. The condo building likely will cost even more.
And the project is going up at a time of tightening credit and weaker demand for housing.
The real estate market nationwide and locally has been slowing in recent months, with sales of single-family homes in the Capital Region tumbling 20 percent in January from year-earlier levels, according to figures released Monday by the Greater Capital Association of Realtors.
"I know it doesn't help when the economy is less than it was," Hoffman said. "But the hotel industry in Saratoga has been strong. The condo market is strong.
"I feel we're in the right spot," he added. Anderson can be reached at 454-5323 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
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