Developed by the City of Houston, the hotel at 1600 Lamar St. isowned by the Houston Convention Center Hotel Corp., which wascharged with stabilizing it. Occupancy at the 2007 close was 64.2%,with its average daily room rate at $147.

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"The property is blowing the doors off what was estimated and isdoing tremendously well," says Mary Carolan, senior vice presidentwith CB Richard Ellis in Houston. She is leading the team that'smarketing the 24-story hotel, which sits on nearly three acresacross the street from the George R. Brown Convention Center."There are no other 1,203-room hotels in Houston," Carolan pointsout, adding it's also benefiting from convention center advancebookings. "There is no competition for this one."

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There is, however, room for growth. "The property is clearlystabilized. I think a property under five years old and with thedemand generator of the convention center has room for growth,"Carolan tells GlobeSt.com. "Private capital will help that along."She says the source of that private capital could come from almostanywhere, either the US or an offshore fund. She explains theHilton Americas meets many of the underpinning requirements foroffshore capital: it's relatively new, has stability because it'snear the convention center and is situated in a pedestrian-friendlylocation.

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Carolan wouldn't comment on the city's reason for selling theasset, but she did acknowledge that city leaders felt it would bean opportune time to put the hotel into private capital's hands."From our perspective, Houston, because of its unusual economicposition, has the tools to drive investment capital from around theworld to take a look at the city for sustainable real estateinvestments," she says.

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The hotel officially goes on the market in the third week ofMay. Carolan says the marketing period will run for four to sixweeks. "This will attract high-quality capital. We have anopportunity not just to showcase this asset, but also the ToyotaCenter and Discovery Green and the other things in the region,"Carolan says. "There are so many things happening in Houston. Thishotel will be good to show Houston off."

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