Astros owner scores construction loan for West Palm hotel

190-key hotel will be used by the Astros during spring training

With a swing and a loan, interior demolition is now underway at a new hotel in West Palm Beach.

Property records show Houston Astros owner Jim Crane just scored an $18.7 million mortgage from Woodforest National Bank for the project at 1655 Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard. The developer has started gutting the building’s interiors, Brian Perrault, a project manager at the construction firm Straticon, which is building the project, said.

The hotel will have a little more than 190 rooms, and advanced construction is expected to begin after permits are secured early next year, Perrault said.

Records show a company managed by Crane paid $6.5 million in February for the westernmost building of the Forum office complex along Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard, next to The Palm Beach Outlets.

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HFF’s Scott Wadler arranged the financing on behalf of the developer. The hotel will be used by the Astros to house players, coaches and support staff during spring training, and will be open to the general public year-round, according to HFF.

The Palm Beach Post reported the Astros plan to invest at least $25 million into the project.

The development is about five miles south of the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, the new spring training complex the Astros are sharing with the Washington Nationals. The 6,500-seat facility, along Military Trail south of 45th Street, opened earlier this year.

It’s also located on a stretch of Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard that has been reinvigorated since the demolition of the old Palm Beach Mall to make way for the Palm Beach Outlets, which opened in 2014.