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STAMFORD, CT-Apex Hospitality Corp. of North Brunswick, N.J. has acquired the former Atria Town Center here for $7.475 million and plans to convert the former assisted living facility into a suites hotel. Apex purchased the property from Mill River Associates, according to Tom Hamm, senior advisor for Sperry Van Ness/Hamm & Co. of Stamford, who brokered the deal. The seller, Mill River Associates, which consists of local real estate investors: Seth Weinstein, Charles Mallory and Randall Salvatore, purchased the property from Atria Assisted Living in January 2003 for $4.5 million, according to Hamm.

Sunil Nayak, president of Apex Hospitality Corp. states that his firm is planning a $2.5 million renovation program and will reopen the 84,500-sf facility as a 110-room Hampton Inn & Suites Hotel. Apex will operate the hotel under a franchise agreement with Hilton Hotels, parent of Hampton Inn. The Stamford hotel will be Apex’s second Hampton Inn, adding to a portfolio that includes Holiday Inn brands and Ramada Conference Center.

The facility was originally built in 1984 and operated originally as the Inn at Mill River, a luxury boutique hotel that included a French restaurant. The facility was later converted into the Atria Town Center, an assisted living facility. The center closed earlier this year, Hamm notes.

Commenting on the deal, Hamm says, “With the hotel industry primed for a recovery, this hotel will satisfy demand for mid-market and extended stay accommodations in this area,” he says. He adds that the replacement value for the property would have been substantially higher than the price paid by the buyer.

According to Smith Travel Research of Hendersonville, TN, hotel room rentals revenue for the city of Stamford totaled $60.3 million in 2002. The city’s hotel occupancy rate was 54.1% last year, however the city did have a rather hefty average hotel room rate of $134 per night.

When the Hampton Inn & Suites opens sometime next year, the new facility will increase the supply of hotel rooms in the city of Stamford by less than 5%. Stamford currently boasts approximately 2,277 hotel rooms, according to Smith Travel Research figures.

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