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More than 100 Potential Bidders Inquire about Buying the 228-room Holiday Inn in Collinsville, Illinois;
Built in 1982, the Previous Onwer Contended it Could Never Make a Profit
By Will Buss, Belleville News-Democrat, Ill.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News

May 3, 2008 - COLLINSVILLE -- Interest in a metro-east Holiday Inn has been so high that potential buyers will be allowed an extra week to make their bid.

Real estate auctioneer Sheldon Good & Co. has decided to push back the sale from May 13 to May 21 as more than 100 parties have inquired about the 228-room hotel in Collinsville. Sheldon Good & Co. President Alan Kravets said there has been more interest in the building than was expected.

"We've had a significant amount of inquiries," Kravets said. "I don't know the exact number. It's a little too early to say, other than we've got a very good response."

Last year, state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias held a judicial sale of the property at 1000 Eastport Drive to take the title and property from the owners. Spokesman Scott Burnham said the outcome has been very positive.

"The response has been very encouraging," Burnham said.

Giannoulias made the move following 25 years of unpaid loans and accrued debt on the property. The hotel was built in 1982 on a $13.4 million state loan issued to investors Gary Fears and B.C. Gitcho under Gov. Jim Thompson's "Build Illinois" program. But over time, unpaid debt resulted in a building more than $32 million in the red.

"It's taken more than 25 years to get it to this point," Burnham said. "If a few more days increases the number of bidders participating in the auction and it ultimately reaches a higher selling price, we're willing to do that."

Sheldon Good & Co. has spent $75,000 to target-market and advertise the sale. Thirty-three of the hotel's rooms have been renovated.

All bids must be submitted to Sheldon Good & Co. by 5 p.m. May 21. The auctioneer will then prequalify all bidders and analyze each before presenting bids to the state treasurer's office May 29.

Contact reporter Will Buss at wbuss@bnd.com or 345-7822, ext. 24.

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To see more of the Belleville News-Democrat, Ill., or to subscribe, visit http://www.belleville.com.

Copyright (c) 2008, Belleville News-Democrat, Ill.

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