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DENVER-Mayor Wellington E. Webb has accepted the recommendations from thecity’s convention center hotel committee of an initial short list of hotel operators to manage the proposed convention center hotel. The hotel, with about 1,200 rooms, will have a price tag estimated as high as $300 million.

The city plans to finance the hotel through the sale of tax-exempt bonds. The deal replaces an earlier plan by Denver developers Bruce and Seth Berger to construct the hotel on a full block they own across from the convention center.

The city chose Hyatt, Hilton, Westin and Marriott, based on their experience in successfully managing convention center hotels in similar markets, the extensiveness of their reservation and sales capacity and their familiarity of the financial structure of this transaction.

In their proposals, they acknowledged the city’s concerns relating to small business participation, union involvement and financial participation in the development of the hotel required by the bond market.

Two of these operators will be selected for final consideration by the end of June.

A total of seven hotel operators showed interest in the project.

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