The Real Deal New York

Ace Hotel owner forms hotel investment firm

November 29, 2011 11:17AM

New York Ace Hotel ownerand GFI Capital Resources Group President Allen Gross and Chartres Lodging Group partner Bruce Blum have formed a Manhattan-based private equity hotel investment firm, the pair announced in a statement today. The new entity will “specialize in value enhancement activities through executing redevelopment, repositioning and/or asset management strategies,” in New York City.

“GB Lodging will be a nimble, hotel value enhancement vehicle that will leverage its boutique and branded DNA to capitalize on special situations as this next cycle evolves,” Blum said. “No doubt Allen’s impressive real estate investment and development track record coupled with his extensive capital markets’ relationships will provide an invaluable backbone to our growth.”

GFI has been an active participant in the transformation of Broadway in the upper 20s, as The Real Deal previously reported. The company’s Ace Hotel has become a neighborhood hotspot, and its NoMad Hotel just one block away is currently in the works.

As previously reported, investors are bullish on New York’s hotel market. Management companies, private equity firms, government investment arms and hedge funds have been edging into the New York market, convinced, it seems, that hotel values in the city still have a ways to climb. — Katherine Clarke