CHICAGO-Denver-based Sage Hospitality Resources has hired James McHugh Construction Co. to renovate the historic Blackstone Hotel at 636 S. Michigan Ave. The $112-million project is expected to bring 330 hotel rooms to the South Loop next fall, eight years after the last guests checked out.

In the intervening years, plans were announced for a condominium conversion, which failed to materialize. Maharishi Royal Residences, LLC sold the Blackstone Hotel in December for $18 million. The hotel will reopen as a Marriott Renaissance property, with a restored lobby, ballroom and second-story restaurant overlooking Grant Park. The restaurant will be built in space that was part of the old Mayfair Theatre.

Because of its landmark status, the Blackstone Hotel project will include restoring the terra cotta facade and mansard roof. The city is committing up to $18 million in tax increment financing to Sage Hospitality Resources as an incentive.

McHugh has established itself in the hotel sector, building or renovating 4,000 rooms during the last 10 years. Its projects include the Crowne Plaza Chicago Metro, Hotel 71, Hotel Monaco and Hotel Allegro.

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