Portland Square Hotel to undergo boutique makeover

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Hotel developer Hank Freid, who recently bought the 100-year-old Portland Square Hotel in New York's theater district, plans to spend $7.5 million to convert the property from a 147-room, two-star hotel into a 115-room, four-star property called Sanctuary.

Renovation is slated to begin in January, with completion expected in the fourth quarter of 2007.

The property will remain open throughout the construction period, and the renovation will occur in stages. The name change will not go into effect until the new lobby is completed.

According to the Impulsive Group, a hotel development and management company headed by Freid, the renovation will include the debut of a heretofore unique feature to hotel bedrooms: in-room baths surrounded by adjustable leather drapery to allow guests to choose an open setting or a private bathing space.

Guest rooms will feature European bed linens, towel warmers, flat-screen TVs and rainfall showerheads.

Plans also call for a high-end, duplex penthouse apartment with roof access and views of Times Square.

The lobby, according to the Impulsive Group, will emphasize small gathering spaces with fireplaces, a bar/lounge and a restaurant. Earth tones will be used throughout.

The Portland Square Hotel already has enhancements such as complimentary wireless Internet access, new bedding, safe-deposit boxes, in-room coffee, ironing boards/irons, hair dryers and an on-demand video system.

Freid said Sanctuary will be "a sophisticated oasis" amidst the big city's bustle, hence the new name.

The Impulsive Group will position the hotel as an upscale destination catering to publishing and corporate executives, modeling agencies and movie studios.

Competitors of the boutique hotel, which is located on West 47th Street, include the Night Hotel on West 45th Street and the Muse Hotel on West 46th Street, Freid said.

The Impulsive Group, which is based in New York, also owns the Ameritania Hotel, the Marrakech Hotel and a number of hostels, all in Manhattan. The company also owns several charter yachts.

The Impulsive Group is in the process of expanding the Ameritania with 100 new rooms, and it is upgrading the Broadway Hotel and Hostel.

The company is looking to expand its luxury footprint in New York with additional hotels.

Industry veteran Anthony Corallo was brought onboard in May as vice president to oversee the renovation and repositioning of the hotel.

After the renovation is complete, rooms will be priced from $265 to $1,800 for the duplex penthouse. Rooms currently go from $129 to $189.

Agents can book in the GDSs or at www.portlandsquarehotel.com.

To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Nadine Godwin at [email protected].

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