Construction was announced under Mayor Lenny Paoletta, opening as a Hilton brand under Mayor Tom Bucci in 1986, Bill and Hillary Clinton visited for a major fundraiser for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill Curry in 1994, and now it appears a sale is imminent to transform Bridgeport’s lone hotel, the Holiday Inn, into market-rate apartments under new owner John Guedes, a Downtown property owner and significant Shelton developer.
The hotel transitioned to a Holiday Inn under the ownership of the Trefz family. Some rooms will be set aside for extended-stay hotel suite guests but the majority converted into roughly 100 apartments tailored to millennial commuters, fully furnished, utilities included, according to Guedes.
No Downtown hotel, now what?
Developers of Steelpointe Harbor plan a hotel in the next phase of construction scheduled to break ground in the spring so depending on Guedes’ timeline the state’s largest city will forego an overnight destination for some time.
More from Brian Lockhart, CT Post:
Constructed in 1986 and purchased by the Trefz family in the mid-1990s, the hotel as of 2020 was assessed at $5.9 million and appraised at $8.5 million, according to municipal records. It is one of the few large gathering sites in Connecticut’s largest city and over the years has hosted numerous campaign functions, gubernatorial and mayoral speeches, business meetings and other civic and political events.
A Trefz spokesperson did not respond to multiple phone messages and emails from Hearst these past couple of weeks about the Holiday Inn’s future. However the company’s attorney, Raymond Rizio, in a statement Monday called the pending deal with Guedes an “attractive” one in part because of the developer’s willingness to maintain some of the hotel operations like the catering and event services.
Guedes said the facility had been losing money and that he began considering adding the property to his portfolio last April.
“There was a lot that went into this–the research (and) what we would need to do. Basically we’re investing $6.5 million to do the conversion,” Guedes said, adding, “The building is very well kept.”
Full story here.