HEI bags Philadelphia hotel

The Center City Embassy Suites represents the fourth hospitality acquisition for the Norwalk, Connecticut-based private equity real estate firm’s second opportunity fund.

Norwalk, Connecticut-based HEI Hospitality has acquired the 288-room Embassy Suites in Center City Philadelphia for an undisclosed sum and is planning $10 million (€8 million) in renovations on the property. The hotel represents the fourth property purchased by the private equity real estate firm’s $425 million second fund.

The Philadelphia hotel market is robust thanks to condo conversions taking rooms out of play. And as an upscale, all-suite property the Center City hotel is positioned to be a market leader, HEI said in a statement.

HEI plans to acquire $1.5 billion in hotels over the next three years, including the four acquired this year. In addition to Philadelphia, the firm is seeking opportunities in the top 50 metropolitan areas in the US.

The Embassy Suites Center City is HEI’s third hotel under that flag and eighth property under the Hilton umbrella. The firm holds a 24-hotel portfolio.

Merritt Hospitality, a wholly owned subsidiary of HEI, will take over management. The firm is the tenth largest hotel management firm in the US, according to its website.

Other acquisitions made for the second vehicle include the Crowne Plaza at San Antonio Riverwalk in Texas; the Embassy Suites in Irivine, California; and the Park Hyatt in San Francisco.

HEI closed its first vehicle on $275 million in May 2004. The second vehicle closed in February.