Renaissance Cleveland Hotel is on the block

H&LA’S David Sangree tells Crain’s Cleveland Business the historic property could generate interest from REITs and national companies


With Cleveland focused on growing its meeting business and bidding for a national political convention in 2016, a big change may be shaping up at the city’s largest and oldest downtown hotel thanks to the family half a world away that owns it.

According to three sources who asked not to be identified, the Chicago-based hotel brokerage unit of Jones Lang LaSalle is shopping the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel on behalf of its owner, CTF Development Inc., which is led by the Cheng family of Hong Kong, a global power in the hotel business.

Jackie Brown, CTF Development’s Washington, D.C.-based asset manager, wouldn’t comment on whether the nearly 500-room hotel is on the market or nearing a sale. Two sources said Jones Lang LaSalle brokers Adam McGaughy and John Nugent have been circulating the offering. Neither McGaughy nor Nugent returned three calls each over the last two weeks from Crain’s.

With Cleveland poised to benefit from the new Cleveland Convention Center and Global Center for Health Innovation and developers planning to add to the lodging mix five hotels — including a Westin in a drastically renovated former Crowne Plaza Hotel — the offering comes at an opportune time. The city’s hotel prospects are on the upswing as the cyclical hotel business enters the binge stage.

David Sangree, president of the Hotel & Leisure Advisors consulting firm in Lakewood, said the property is likely to garner interest from national hotel companies and publicly traded real estate investment trusts. 

“They like to buy in larger markets and typically avoid a small market like Cleveland,” Sangree said. “But with an asset like the Renaissance, because it is the largest hotel in downtown Cleveland and it is historic, they might take a look at it.”

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