Downtown Colorado Springs hasn’t had a newly constructed hotel in more than 40 years, yet will see the opening of one new hotel and the groundbreaking of another over the next six weeks.
A 10-story, 168-room Hilton Garden Inn under construction at Bijou Street and Cascade Avenue is 95% complete and will open to guests in mid- to late June, said Slawek Pietraszek, managing director of Springs-based New Vision Hotels, the project’s developer. A formal grand opening will take place a few months later.
“Everything is looking good,” Pietraszek said Thursday. “I don’t see any obstacles.”
He said his group had hoped to open the hotel in April, but work was slowed by the shortage of skilled labor — a problem many residential and commercial builders have faced in recent years as the economy heated up and the construction industry took off.
“You never hit the dates,” Pietraszek said. “I don’t know anybody in the construction business that hits the date unless they go aggressively.”
Crews continue to work on common areas at the Hilton Garden Inn, but its rooms and suites are completed, Pietraszek said. The hotel’s ground floor is being marketed as retail and commercial space, while its lobby, a restaurant and about 2,500 square feet of meeting space will be on the second floor. Rooms will be on floors three through 10, he said.
A plan for a rooftop restaurant has been shelved for now while all efforts are put into the hotel, Pietraszek said. The rooftop venue won’t open for perhaps another 12 months, he said.
Meanwhile, a 3:30 p.m., June 17 groundbreaking ceremony has been scheduled for an eight-story hotel with more than 250 rooms to be built in the 400 block of South Tejon Street that will carry dual Marriott brands — SpringHill Suites and Element.
That hotel, which is part of an urban renewal site, is being developed by a group composed of Jim DiBiase, a director with Olive Real Estate Group in Colorado Springs; Kevin Engelhardt of Hotel Operation Services in Monument; and Springs general contractor Vince Colarelli.
Two more hotels also are taking shape downtown: a 120-room Hyatt Place is on the drawing board for Nevada Avenue and Kiowa Street, while ground was broken in January for Kinship Landing, a boutique hotel with 80 beds in a mix of 27 private rooms, seven suites and six shared dorms on South Nevada Avenue.
Downtown has seen the opening of new hotels in recent years, but they’ve come by way of office buildings that were remodeled into the Mining Exchange hotel and a Holiday Inn Express & Suites.