×

Sotherly Hotels Inc. Completes Conversion of Houston Hotel, Relaunches Under Historic Name – The Whitehall

WILLIAMSBURG, Va., April 14, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SoTHERLY Hotels Inc. (NASDAQ:SOHO) (the “Company” or “Sotherly”) announced the rebranding of the Crowne Plaza Houston Downtown hotel to The Whitehall, returning the iconic hotel to its historic name following an extensive $5 million renovation. The Whitehall will become the second property in the Company’s portfolio of independent hotels, which the Company launched in September 2015 with The Georgian Terrace in Atlanta.

Located at 1700 Smith Street in Houston’s central business district, The Whitehall was built in 1963. Designed by Welton Becket and Associates, the hotel was the embodiment of the firm’s “Total Design” concept, in which the firm assumed responsibility for all aspects of the hotel’s identity, including engineering, interiors, furniture, fixtures, landscaping, signage and even the silverware, menus, matchbooks and napkins in the hotel’s restaurant. Many of the original hallmarks of Becket’s mid-century design remain today, including the iconic spiral “floating” staircase connecting the first and second floor public spaces and the white Italian marble flooring.

In 1989, the hotel closed. Ten years later the property was purchased and underwent an extensive $25 million revitalization that brought the property up to contemporary standards, including new façade, windows and roof on the exterior as well as new interior design, finishings and furniture. Upon completion of the renovation, the hotel opened in 2001 as the Crowne Plaza Cullen Center (later renamed the Crowne Plaza Houston Downtown). Sotherly purchased the hotel in 2013 and began their $5 million renovation of the guestrooms, public spaces and food and beverage outlets. Included in the new round of renovations are a casual coffee bistro, Buffalo Bayou Coffee, the newly redesigned and named Edgar’s Hermano, a restaurant featuring Southern-Mexican fusion cuisine, and Part & Parcel, The Whitehall’s lively new outdoor bar and hot downtown meeting destination.

The majority of the renovation focused on upgrading the hotel’s finishes and amenities to reflect Sotherly’s mission of extending true Southern hospitality to all of its guests. The Whitehall of today marries modern amenities with postmodern and classic 1960s revival architecture style in its beautifully renovated accommodations and public spaces.

The hotels 259 meticulously renovated guestrooms are designed to provide a luxurious, peaceful and productive stay to business and leisure travelers alike. All-new luxury amenities include hardwood flooring in all rooms, complimentary Wi-Fi throughout all public and meeting spaces, and eco-friendly spa toiletries. Modern plush seating, a full-length dressing mirror, updated window treatments and wall coverings and all-new bedding give the guestrooms a residential feel. Adding to the Southern charm are Sotherly’s signature “Sothern Delights” lemon sugar cookies and “Sothern Springs” bottled water, complimentary to all guests. Visitors can enjoy the outdoor rooftop pool and sundeck, the 24-hour fitness center and fine local cuisine and coffee at the hotel’s restaurants and bars.

Among the hotel’s most significant upgrades is the addition of a permanent in-house art gallery on the second floor. A standard in all of Sotherly’s independent hotels, the gallery features works by students and alumni of the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). The gallery is made possible through a partnership between Sotherly Hotels and SCAD.

As a member of the Sotherly collection of independent hotels, The Whitehall is affiliated with Preferred Hotels and Resorts, which represents a diverse portfolio of exquisite and elegant independent hotels. All Preferred Hotels and Resorts properties must apply for membership and adhere to stringent quality standards. Additionally, The Whitehall is a member of Historic Hotels of America, a collection of 275 historic properties defined by a commitment to maintaining authenticity, sense of place and architectural integrity. All members of Historic Hotels of America must be at least 50 years old, must have historic significance and have been designated as a National Historic Landmark or be eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.

For more information about The Whitehall visit its website at www.thewhitehallhouston.com.

About Sotherly Hotels Inc.
Sotherly Hotels Inc. is a self-managed and self-administered lodging REIT focused on the acquisition, renovation, upbranding and repositioning of upscale and upper upscale full-service hotels in the Southern United States. Currently, the Company’s portfolio consists of investments in twelve hotel properties and comprise 3,011 rooms. Most of the Company’s properties operate under the Hilton Worldwide, InterContinental Hotels Group and Starwood Hotels and Resorts brands. Sotherly Hotels Inc. was organized in 2004 and is headquartered in Williamsburg, Virginia. For more information, please visit www.sotherlyhotels.com.

Contact at the Company: Scott Kucinski SoTHERLY Hotels Inc. 410 West Francis Street Williamsburg, Virginia 23185 (757) 229-5648

Source:Sotherly Hotels Inc.