Qatari company buys Viceroy Miami for $65M, now a W Hotel by Starwood

Former Viceroy Miami hotel
Former Viceroy Miami hotel

UPDATED June 1, 2016 8:50 p.m. The Viceroy Miami hotel was acquired for $64.5 million by a Qatari company, which has renamed the property W Miami.

Al Rayyan Tourism Investment Company, the international hotel investment and hospitality subsidiary of Al Faisal Holding Company, one of Qatar’s largest private industry groups, bought the hotel, according to a release from the Qatari firm. The hotel is now part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ W Hotels brand, ARTIC announced.

West Hollywood, California-based Viceroy Hotel Group previously operated the 148-room hotel at 485 Brickell Avenue. On Friday, a Viceroy spokesperson declined to comment on whether the hotel’s management was to change hands. As of Wednesday, employees answered the phone as the W Miami.

Messages left for Starwood spokespeople were not returned.

The deal breaks down to about $436,000 per hotel room.

The property is part of the 10-acre Icon Brickell complex in the Brickell neighborhood. Amenities include a 28,000-square-foot spa and fitness center, a restaurant on the 15th floor and FIFTY lounge on the 50th floor. The Related Group completed the tower in 2008. The three-building complex was designed by Arquitectonica.

“W Miami is a magnificent property which we are proud to add to our expanding U.S. investment portfolio,” H.E. Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani, chairman of ARTIC, said in a statement. “It is our fifth investment in the U.S. and our second in Miami and its acquisition, which is fully in line with our targeted strategic approach, demonstrates the strides which ARTIC is successfully making in the global arena. It is an outstanding hotel in every way: location, quality and architectural design.”

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ARTIC’s other South Florida property is the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort. The company also owns Radisson Blu in Chicago, the St. Regis Washington D.C. and the Manhattan at Times Square W Hotel in New York. Overall, ARTIC’s portfolio includes 24 hotels and projects in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and North America, the company said.

With the changes in ownership and management company, W Miami will now undergo a renovation that will create a “W Living Room” on the hotel’s 15th floor overlooking Biscayne Bay, according to a release from W Hotels. In addition, the 50th floor rooftop will be transformed with a cocktail lounge and WET deck.

Pebblebrook Hotel Trust previously owned the Viceroy, paying $37 million in 2011. Pebblebrook, based in Bethesda, Maryland, could not be reached for comment, but the publicly traded company announced the sale on Wednesday. 

Hodges Ward Elliott, a hotel brokerage and investment-banking firm, represented Pebblebrook in this most recent sale.

The pool deck at Icon Brickell, shared by condo residents and hotel guests, is the focal point of major litigation. The three towers’ condo associations are suing the project’s general contractor John Moriarty & Associates over alleged problems with the pool, parking garage and maintenance. An employee on Wednesday at the hotel said the pool is open and operating.

Hotel rooms at the now W include 42-inch TVs, marble bathrooms and mini bars. Units with kitchens and washer/dryers are available for a minimum of three days.

Marriott International is acquiring Starwood Hotels & Resorts in a deal valued at $12.4 billion. The takeover will create the world’s largest hotel operator, although it’s already the subject of a number of lawsuits across the country.

In South Florida, Starwood operates two W hotels: the W South Beach and the W Fort Lauderdale.

The Next Miami first reported that the Viceroy may become a W last week.