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Noble Investment Group Acquires Majority Stake in Atlanta's W Buckhead
Staving Off Building's Foreclosure

By Leon Stafford, The Atlanta Journal-ConstitutionMcClatchy-Tribune Regional News

Nov. 09, 2011--The building housing the high end W Hotel Buckhead no longer faces foreclosure, according to owner Noble Investment Group.

Noble announced Tuesday it has reached a deal with lender Prudential to restructure the building's almost $62 million loan, which matured this month. The building opened as a W to much fanfare in 2008 because its interior is designed by "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" alum Thom Filicia and offers a Rande Gerber-operated rooftop bar. It was first advertised for foreclosure in July.

The loan restructuring is one of a string of moves Noble has made recently to strengthen its presence in the metro Atlanta hotel market, where growth has ground to a virtual halt lately after years of marathon building. Only a handful of new hotel construction is planned in metro Atlanta, including a 12-story Hilton Garden Inn/Homewood Suites combination hotel underway in Midtown.

Over the last year, Noble has purchased a Holiday Inn in Decatur, a Residence Inn in Midtown and a Hyatt Place in the Perimeter area, CEO Mit Shah said. The company also plans to soon begin construction on a 150-room Hyatt House in Cobb County's Overland Park, he said.

Mark Woodworth, president of PKF Hospitality Research, which studies the lodging industry, said now is the time to buy hotels. Prices are low because of struggling property values, and there is little competition from builders, which gives well-capitalized buyers an advantage.

"For those who know what they are doing, and I commit Noble to this group, this is the time to invest because the fundamentals of improving hotel performance for the next few years is very strong," he said.


(c)2011 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Atlanta, Ga.)

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Bonnie Herring
Noble Investment Group
(404) 262-9660

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