Back in October, St. Pete Rising broke the news of an 11-story, 135-key boutique hotel proposed for the heart of Downtown St. Pete’s trendy EDGE District. Since the announcement, DevMar Development has been diligently working behind the scenes to bring the project to fruition.
The development will be located on a currently vacant lot at the southeast corner of 1st Avenue North and 11th Street North, which is owned by local real estate investor Jonathan Daou, the de facto “mayor” of the EDGE District.
After months of planning, many of the project’s details are starting to come into focus. We’ve just learned that the hotel will be a Marriott property. Specifically, it will fall under Marriott’s Tribute Portfolio brand.
“Once they toured the area, the folks at Marriott immediately saw the potential for the EDGE District,” says Mark DeMaria, CEO of DevMar. “And with so much city pride throughout St. Pete, we knew the Tribute Portfolio brand would be a perfect fit.”
Marriott’s Tribute Portfolio is a family of independent boutique hotels that are designed “for travelers seeking fresh travel experiences that reflect their own unique individual point of view.” Each hotel is independently and uniquely branded featuring interiors that match the surrounding neighborhood, which will allow the new EDGE Hotel to be designed specifically for St. Pete, as opposed to bringing in a cookie-cutter style chain.
The EDGE Hotel will be the first Tribute Portfolio hotel in Pinellas County and will join The Westshore Grand, in Tampa, and The Sarasota Modern, in Sarasota, as the third Tribute Portfolio hotel in the region. It will also be the first hotel in Downtown St. Pete’s growing EDGE District, catering to travelers who are more interested in living like a local, than a tourist.
“We think this hotel will provide more options for business travelers and tourists to stay in one of Tampa Bay’s most walkable, vibrant neighborhoods,” says DeMaria. “The local downtown businesses will benefit from the increased foot traffic too.”
Additionally, the hotel should attract the visiting families and friends of nearby apartment residents. Located a block away, 930 Central Flats has leased 90% of their 218 apartments after only 6 months in operation. Two blocks away, Related Group is wrapping up construction on Icon Central, a 368-unit apartment development with 38,000 square feet of retail, with the first move-in’s planned for next month.
Last month, DevMar went before the St. Pete City Council, who was acting as the Community Redevelopment Agency, seeking approval for the project as consistent with the Intown West Redevelopment Plan. The Intown West Redevelopment Plan is an approved plan that sets the guidelines for new development for the western side of Downtown St. Pete. Council unanimously voted to approve the project.
The EDGE Hotel’s focus on amenities begins on the ground floor, where the hotel will be activated on three sides by the hotel lobby, a restaurant and bar, sidewalk cafe, and retail space. A 37-space parking garage will lie above the ground floor and will be accessible by an auto lift, instead of a traditional ramp, in order to save space. The hotel will also have designated parking for shared scooters and bicycles.
But the rooftop is where the project really gets exciting. The hotel will have a rooftop pool for guests and a 1,300 square foot sky lounge, which will be open to the public, serving cocktails and picturesque skyline views. It will be the first rooftop bar in the EDGE District.
Two Manhattan-based companies have been hired to help bring the EDGE Hotel to life. Boutique design firm Krause Sawyer will be creating the EDGE Hotel’s interiors and Sideways, a digital-first branding and creative agency, is developing the hotel’s brand identity.
This will be the second St. Pete project for DevMar, which is also developing Vantage Lofts, an 11-story luxury apartment building under construction at the northwest corner of 1st Avenue North and 16th Street. Similar to The EDGE Hotel, Vantage Lofts also features a rooftop pool and amenity deck. Vantage Lofts will top out next later this month and is on track to begin move-in’s by the end of the year.
“We love St. Petersburg and continue to have confidence in the area,” says DeMaria. “With so many exciting projects in the pipeline, such as the Tropicana Field redevelopment, the city has a very bright future and we are thrilled to be a contributor.”
The $51 million EDGE Hotel is expected to break ground later this year and open sometime in late 2020. Once complete, it will join the nearby TRU by Hilton hotel, which is currently under construction in the Grand Central District, as the newest hotels in Downtown St. Pete.