Ground broken on new ’boutique’ hotel; to open in late 2020

Nearly three years after it was first proposed, ground was broken Friday on downtown Fort Wayne’s newest — and perhaps most upscale — hotel.

Vera Bradley co-founder Barbara Bradley Baekgaard, co-owner of the 124-room “boutique” facility with Oregon-based Provenance Hotels, told the crowd gathered at West Main and Harrison streets that she would have liked to begin construction sooner but that the delay was fortunate because of all the good things happening in Fort Wayne right now.

“It’s been my dream to open a hotel and create a place where Fort Wayne can come together to do business, celebrate life’s special moments and connect,” she said in a statement. “We are going to create a hotel that reflects the pride we have in our city.”

A name for the hotel, which is expected to open late next year, has not yet been announced.

Others assisting with the project, the cost of which was placed at about $27 million in 2016, include the Indiana Economic Development Corp., Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission, Allen County Commissioners, the Capital Improvement Board, Greater Fort Wayne Inc. and the city of Fort Wayne.

In a statement, Mayor Tom Henry said he appreciates “the belief and commitment Provenance Hotels and Barbara Baekgaard are demonstrating by building a unique hotel for our community and region. ”

The hotel, adjacent to the city’s soon-to-open redeveloped riverfront, will include a ground-level food and beverage operation, rooftop bar and meeting space.

In 2016, Provenance President Bashar Wali estimated the hotel will attract 45,000 visitors per year, employ 100 people and generate $9 million in annual revenues. “We have fallen — hard — for this city,” he told the crowd Friday. “Fort Wayne is positioning itself for a bright, dynamic future.”

The hotel will be designed and built by local firms Elevatus Architecture and Hagerman Group.

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July 5, 2019 at 12:35PM

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