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PRINCETON, NJ-The owners of the historic Nassau Inn in Downtown’s Palmer Square will formally present plans to the regional planning board this week for an expansion and renovation of the venerable property. A previous plan to expand the hotel had been approved by local officials in 1998, but never carried out.

The revised plans include two new building additions and a general overhaul of the property, according to information that has been released by the owners, a private group operating as Nassau Inn, and design consultant Spiezle Architectural Group. “The Nassau Inn has begun a rejuvenation initiative focused on keeping pace within the hospitality industry…providing more functional accommodations for guests and obtaining much-needed program space,” reads a prepared statement.

Although two additions would be built under the proposal, the overall room count would increase only slightly from 203 to 215. That’s because the renovation of the property’s existing Colonial wing would increase the size of the individual rooms while actually reducing the key count from 84 to 56.

A new six-story wing would rise along Hulfish St., replacing an existing courtyard. The top four floors would have a total of 40 new guest rooms and 8,000 sf of retail space, and the lower two floors would house 7,125 sf of meeting/ballroom space on the second floor and a loading dock on the first floor.

The second addition, along Palmer Square West, would replace an existing one-story retail building with a 9,000-sf, three-story structure consisting of retail space on the ground floor, meeting space on the second floor and a storage area on the third. The plan also calls for a new second entrance to the property and an outdoor dining area.

The oldest portion of the Nassau Inn dates back to 1756, and in the 1930s the mixed-use Palmer Square downtown commercial district was developed with the inn as its centerpiece. Pending approvals, the ownership projects a phased three-year build-out for the renovation/expansion, the cost of which hasn’t been released.

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