"Starwood's great, but the timing just didn't work out with themand this project," says Tod Decker, president of Scottsdale,AZ-based Valhalla Development Group. "We're still friends and westill like them. But, we had to pull back from their timeframe inan effort to get ours going." The 240-key hotel and 24-unitresidential units, slated for 80 E. Rio Salado Pkwy., are expectedto break ground by December.

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Decker tells GlobeSt.com that the contract with the newhospitality company will be signed within the coming weeks, keepingthe flag's identity under wraps until the deal is done. If all goesas planned, the hotel should be operational by spring 2011. "Thisis still a four-diamond hotel and a perfect fit for thedevelopment," he stresses.

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When Hayden Ferry Lakeside broke ground in 2001,plans called for up to 388 condominiums, hotel, retail and officespace. Even a couple of years ago when the 183-room Le Meridien wasunveiled as the project's anchor hotel, there were still a highnumber of condos on the drawing board.

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But, Decker says things have changed due to current market anddemand for condos. "We ended up changing our program a bit tocreate more rooms for the hotel and fewer condos," he says. "Theresidential side was lowered and we raised the hospitalityside."

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The Hayden Ferry Lakeside website does show two condo projects:the 40-unit Edgewater at Hayden Ferry Lakeside and 104-unitBridgeview at Hayden Ferry Lakeside. Both condo projects have beencompleted.

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