La Quinta moves into New York

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NEW YORK -- La Quinta raised its first flag here earlier this month.

The 179-room La Quinta Inn Manhattan, located at 17 W. 32nd St., will be operated by Apple Core Hotels, a group of five Manhattan-based properties run in collaboration with major chains.

Vijay Dandapani, chief operating officer of Apple Core, said the property -- a repositioning from the former Best Western Manhattan -- is part of the group's strategy to expand its midmarket hotel inventory, which includes the Super 8 and Red Roof Inns brands.

"La Quinta gives us primacy in Manhattan in the midprice segment, a niche that nowadays caters largely to business travelers from secondary cities who do business in primary cities," Dandapani said.

"With its high-quality standards and solid guest loyalty program, La Quinta was the perfect fit for us," he said.

For La Quinta, the hotel signals the chain's expansion into "high barriers-to-entry markets," said Alan Tallis, La Quinta's executive vice president and chief development officer.

Built from 1902 to 1904 as an apartment hotel by architect Harry Milliken, the property's building enjoys landmark status. It was called the Aberdeen Hotel for many years and in the 1920s became one of the first properties in the city to admit women unaccompanied by men.

The hotel is in the final stages of a $2.5 million renovation, scheduled to be completed in March, that includes its rooms, public spaces and lobby.

Dandapani said all rooms will feature free high-speed Internet access by the end of February.

The hotel has a business center, gym and rooftop Sky Bar, which serves a light menu and cocktails.

Rates start at $89 per room, double, including continental breakfast. Commission is 10%.

For additional information or to make reservations, call (800) 567-7720 or visit Apple Core's Web site at www.applecorehotels.com.

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