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Loews Hotels & Resorts has added a familiar property in Tucson to its growing collection. The company just acquired Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, a 398-room lodging destination that has operated under Loews Hotels’ management since the doors first swung open at 7000 N. Resort Dr. in 1984.
Ventana Canyon is one of three properties Loews Hotels purchased this year in separate transactions totaling $230 million. The Estes family of Tucson–Ventana Canyon was developed by The Estes Co.–sold all but a minority ownership stake in the property to Loews Hotels. Sometimes, it’s all about relationships.
“There’s always a market for iconic resort properties of which this is certainly one. In the present environment there’s a lot of buyer interest and lender interest in hotel acquisitions, which makes for a competitive market, and in those circumstances an existing long-term relationship can be a key advantage in closing a deal,” Anne Lloyd-Jones, managing director with hospitality consulting firm HVS told Commercial Property Executive.
Loews relied on cash and property-level debt to finance the purchase.
Sited on 100 acres in the Sonoran Desert’s Catalina Mountain range, Ventana Canyon has garnered international prominence with such offerings as two Tom Fazio-designed golf courses, a 7,000-square-foot spa and an 80-foot natural waterfall. Loews Hotels plans to kick off a renovation program in 2015 in an effort to further strengthen the resort’s foothold in the market.
Loews Hotels’ purchase of Ventana Canyon dovetails perfectly with the company’s current strategy, as did this past summer’s acquisition of Graves 601 Hotel in Minneapolis, now Loews Minneapolis Hotel; and InterContinental Chicago O’Hare Hotel, renamed Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel. As Jim Tisch, president & CEO of Loews Corp., parent company of Loews Hotels, noted during the company’s third quarter earnings call Nov. 3, “Loews Hotels continues to focus on building its brand and broadening its customer base through the addition of new properties in gateway cities and resort destinations. The financial results are improving nicely.”