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SAN ANTONIO-Work is moving along on the Watermark Hotel, a 99-room luxury hotel along San Antonio’s River Walk. Construction began in March and is scheduled to wrap up in time for a November 2003 opening.

Patrick Kennedy, president of La Mansion Hotels Ltd., is the developer. He plans to operate the Watermark and La Mansion del Rio, a 337-room hotel across the San Antonio River from the new hotel. The project’s cost has not been disclosed.

Henry Feldman, general manager of the La Mansion del Rio, tells GlobeSt.com that the new hotel demonstrates the company’s faith in and commitment to the San Antonio market. Feldman also is president of the San Antonio Hotel-Motel Association. “We feel good about San Antonio from a hotel industry standpoint and we feel that’s got some great upside potential,” Feldman says.

The Watermark is not starting from scratch. Kennedy is remodeling the Karotkin building, erected in 1900, for the hotel. The project involved adding three stories to the original seven-story building. That will bring it to a total of 121,000 sf.

The hotel will feature a 16,600-sf, European-style spa and fitness center spaced over two floors. Another fitness center will take 2,000 sf on the building’s top floor. Rooms and suites will have high ceilings, marble baths and Jacuzzi baths. The living areas range from 400 sf to 600 sf and offer river and city skyline views.

HKS Inc. of Dallas is the project’s architect and San Antonio-based Lyda Constructors is the general contractor.

San Antonio’s overall hotel room supply grew by 600 rooms or 2% from July 2001 to July 2002. That number will rise in December when the Hotel Valencia San Antonio Riverwalk opens. The 213-room hotel at St. Mary and Houston streets is developed by the Houston-based Valencia Group.

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