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Convention center hotel gets franchise OK

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Wilmington's long-awaited convention center hotel may finally be moving forward.

Friday, the city learned that Hilton Hotels has approved Harmony Hospitality's application to build a $33.6 million, 186-room Embassy Suites as the convention center hotel.

Embassy Suites is a Hilton brand hotel, and Harmony Hospitality, Inc. of Virginia Beach, VA, is the city's hotel developer.

The city says the franchise approval is a major milestone toward the construction of the privately-owned convention center hotel. Final steps, according to the city, include completion of the purchase and development agreement by April 30, as stipulated in the city's current agreement with Harmony Hospitality.

The proposed 163,000-square-foot hotel would include a second story full-service restaurant and 6,600 square feet of meeting space. The all-suite hotel will be about the same height as the nearby Hilton Hotel.

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Ace reporter Bob Gotcha interviews the Mayor

(Note: This piece is entirely fictional. Any resemblance to any actual mayors is purely coincidental and is not to be construed as anything even resembling reality, unless of course you happen to accidentally make that connection yourself in your own mind.)

- “Thanks for consenting to this interview Mr. Mayor.”
- “No problem, and thank you again for agreeing to meet me in Ethiopia where the voters probably can’t find me, or laugh at me or make remarks about my hair. Next time, some other country though. You know you just can’t find any decent hairspray anywhere in Ethiopia?”
- “Is it true that this hotel deal is actually now complete?”
- “Bob, I’ve told you guys that a million times! Why don’t you ever believe me? “
- “Well, Mr. Mayor, maybe it’s because every time you say that, it turns out to not be the case.”
- “Doesn’t the fact that I’ve repeated it so many times count for anything? That’s just soooo unfair!”
- “How about all of that EB5 exemption stuff that was holding things up back in mid-January? What’s happening with that? Has that all been straightened out?”
- “I don’t know what you’re talking about. That wasn’t me. That was probably said by someone who just happens to look and sound exactly like me!”
- “Mr. Mayor, in mid-January, you specifically said that was what was what was holding up the deal.”
- “Uhhh ….. I don’t exactly recall saying that ….. I think ….. Maybe ….. Sort of …..”
- “OK, moving on ….. Harmony’s press release says that they still have to complete both the purchase agreement and the development agreement. Doesn’t that mean the deal is actually not complete at this time?”
- “Well sure Bob, if you’re if you’re gonna get all nitpicky about it, that could possibly maybe mean something allegedly like that …. But I don’t seem to recall exactly ….. Maybe …. Sort of ….. “
- “Doesn’t the City’s current agreement state that there’s an April 30th deadline?”
- “Well, that could be maybe sort of true, but that’s only if you’re using actual numbers I think …. Hey, did I tell you how great a job we did on getting that whole overhang issue fixed with the new plans a couple of months ago?”
- “OK, moving on ..… again ….. Harmony’s announcement also stated that they’re including a full service restaurant and 6600 square feet of meeting space. Doesn’t that directly compete with the facilities already at the Convention Center, diminishing the paltry amount of revenue it’s currently receiving?”
- “They are? ….. Why would they go and do that? ….. Boy, that wouldn’t make any sense at all!”
- “Again, Mr. Mayor, what is your response to that question?”

(A three minute pause)

- “Wow, all of these questions are making me really hungry! Hey, how about I take you out to eat? I’ve got a pocket full of tax dollars in my expense account we can spend somewhere! What do you think? I know, how about Ethiopian food? …………….. “

How funny

From the story: "The proposed 163,000-square-foot hotel would include a second story full-service restaurant and 6,600 square feet of meeting space."

So the hotel will be competing with the convention center.

How dare you ask a logical

How dare you ask a logical question????
Some people...I Swannie :-(

"convention center hotel MAY

"convention center hotel MAY finally be moving forward"
{MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY MAY}

It'll wind up being a "Motel" if approved...with a frog in the Green Watered Pool. That'll knock a few mill off the price...frog extra though :-(
Get it over with will Ya Council? An ongoing news story every 6 weeks or so that usually has people shaking their heads and laughing.
Wait...when the money comes up short for this Baby White Elephant...John Q. Public won't like the news stories then.
Where's Iron Man when you need him?

Hopefully this will get built

But I do wonder
If there's NO shortage of rooms now - where are conventioneers staying? Probably the Hilton.
If they now stay at the the Embassy Suites the net gain is?
ZERO............

I'm sorry but the last 3 conferences my daughter would normally have traveled for were held "electronically" over the internet.
Convention Centers are dying because of this technology and costs associated with travel. If we continue to elect leaders that don't plan for the future then of course we will pay the price......
Oh wait - that's a great idea for a meeting! A gathering of all Wilmington politicians that have wasted taxpayers monies !! Held at the CC.
Is the Convention Center big enough?

Vog

Meeting?

that would more likely qualify as an event to further validate the wisdom and foresight certain City Council members and Mayo had to pony up all of the city tax dollars to build and maintain the Albatross.

Then set up the construction trailer for the hotel on the CC parcel of land; pay the CC a dollar a day; and then you have a daily event which further supports the theory the construction of the CC was a wise decision.

I wonder how quickly those investor Green Cards will be in the mail?

No Vog...the CC isn't big

No Vog...the CC isn't big enough for City Council's meetings. It would take Hartsfield-Jackson Field in Atlanta (and all gates) for politicians that have wasted taxpayers monies to gather and meet, and Mayor "what's his name"!