06/01/2013

Hollywood, Florida Commissioners approve the lease for the new Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort

Hollywood Commissioners approved the ground lease on a $146 million hotel project on the beach.

"This is an important day for Hollywood," said city manager Cathy Swanson-Rivenbark.

The Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort is expected to be a 17-story, 4-star hotel and entertainment complex, branded as an island escape in the middle of Hollywood. The property will also have space for boat docks along the intracoastal, retail space, and a refurbished band shell at the end of Johnson street.

Starwood Capital, the company behind luxury hotels like the W and St. Regis, is helping with the financing by committing a minimum of $45 million of equity into the project.

The plan promises that Hollywood will reap the benefits: at least $1 million a year in rent, 350 permanent jobs, and a bump in property values.

"We made the best choice we possibly could. It's always a dice roll when you're doing real estate development. You can never see the future. But you just take all the precautions you can and try to get as much money as you can, and that's what we did tonight for the taxpayers," said Hollywood mayor Peter Bober.

The lone "no" vote came from commissioner Pete Hernandez, who raised questions about how much the city will actually benefit from the deal.

"A 99 year lease is pretty much the equivalent of a sale, and the people didn't have a right to say anything. Basically, we made the decision for them. And, for most of the people I talked to in my district, they didn't approve of this," Hernandez said.

Once the financing is in order and paperwork is complete, construction is expected to begin in July, and last 27 months.


Read this article at Local10.com.