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San Francisco Hotel

Big names who own even bigger hotels have descended on DC today for our annual hotel investment summit, which we call BLIS. We snapped Thayer Lodging Trust chairman Fred Malek (right, with Pircher Nichols' Gene Leone) regaling the crowd with his investment strategy, which has of late included the purchase of the Ritz Carlton right here in San Francisco. Fred says the firm won't buy anything unless it's convinced it can double operating income, and also says being conservative on leverage is the way to go.

450 are in the ballroom at DC's just-opened Marriott Marquis, the largest hotel in the city at 1,175 rooms. We've also heard so far from political pundit Tucker Carlson and Trump Hotels COO Jim Petrus; stay tuned later this week for their comments as well as full BLIS coverage.