Fairfield Inn replacing DeGroen's brewery

November 09, 2007|By Lorraine Mirabella | Lorraine Mirabella,Sun reporter

A Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott will open in a former brewery in Jonestown near Little Italy, one of a raft of new hotels either under way or planned for downtown Baltimore.

The developers expect to start demolition next month to clear the way for the 154-room hotel, which will front on President Street. It is the former site of Baltimore Brewing Co., which brewed DeGroen's German-style beer in its restaurant there for 15 years before closing in 2005.

The hotel will be developed and owned by Raleigh, N.C.-based Summit Associates LLC, a hotel developer; Baltimore-based A&R Development, which will oversee construction; and Bethesda-based Hospitality Partners Hotel Management, which will operate the hotel.

A record 1,192 hotel rooms are under construction in the center city, including the 757-room convention Hilton, according to the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore. Another 1,891 rooms are planned at 15 hotel projects, including Fairfield Inn.

Gene Singleton, president of Summit Associates, termed the President Street location ideal, given its proximity to Little Italy, museums, the Inner Harbor and the city's business district.

He anticipates that the Fairfield brand will appeal to families and older visitors on weekends and business travelers during the week.

"It was an exceptional location for a hotel," Singleton said.

The development team has a contract to purchase the former brewery and the adjacent Brewer's Park from Baltimore Brewing Co. owner Theo DeGroen, Singleton said.

He did not disclose the purchase price but said development costs, including the site, will be an estimated $23 million.

The developers have agreed to restore the facades of three rowhouses, one on Lombard Street and two on Albemarle Street, that had been part of the brewery. They will be used for specialty suites and a fitness center.

lorraine.mirabella@baltsun.com

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