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The Truth About Houston's Hotel Boom

Houston Hotel

A tsunami of hotel construction will change the face of the city. (And will allow your in-laws to visit more often... for better or worse.) We'll take an inside look at what that means for commercial real estate at Bisnow's first-ever Hotel & Lodging Summit on Sept. 30 at the Hilton Americas, 7am. 


For starters, 66 hotels will be built over the next two years, and that's mostly just the major brands. Panelist Arch-Con SVP of hospitality Michael Vaughn tells us North Houston, in particular, will never look the same—he’s got seven projects under construction (or breaking ground any day) across Houston, and every one is north of I-10. The Woodlands alone will double its room count in the next two years, particularly huge since it already had a solid base of supply.


With such big numbers, it won’t surprise anyone to hear that most of the big brands franchise tags have been spoken for and/or built out in Houston. Michael expects a big push for boutique hotels coming up. The Galleria, Downtown, Energy Corridor, and The Woodlands are saturated, so boutique projects will need to fill the gap. (Midway’s working on it with Hotel Alessandra, scheduled to open late 2016.) Michael tells us boutiques are slower and riskier projects to build that require experienced developers, but they really draw the younger generation. Michael includes himself among the guests who will pay $30 more per night for an experience rather just than a room and rewards program. Rendered here is a boutique Aloft hotel Arch-Con is building in College Station.


Up in The Woodlands, Arch-Con has a nine-story, 206-room under construction and a six-story full-service Holiday Inn breaking ground soon (rendered above). Michael says construction costs are really changing how hospitality projects are built; to make them pencil out, development teams may have to get creative with the structure. (For example, the Hyatt Galleria was planned as cast in place, but is now being built with just a load bearing, metal stud system.) And don’t expect to finalize design and break ground right away; labor shortages are causing backlog. To learn more, please join us on Sept. 30, 7am, for Bisnow's Hotel & Lodging Summit at the Hilton Americas.