The Design Center of the Carolinas, a building located in Charlotte, N.C., was sold to a company affiliated with real estate investment firm Asana Partners, based in Charlotte.
Ram Realty Services of Florida sold the property for $42.7 million. Included in the deal are 4.5 acres of land consisting of the main Design Center buildings and an office building at the southeast corner of Camden and West Boulevard. Not included in the sale are multiple surface parking lots and a number of small structures located between Worthington Avenue and West Boulevard.
Ram Realty is partnering with furniture company West Elm to develop a 150-room hotel at the site of the former Design Center. This will be West Elm's first attempt at breaking into the upscale hospitality market, and its Design Center Hotel project is expected to open late 2018.
The Design Center of the Carolinas is a collection of office and retail spaces housed in a former mill. The building also includes a number of specialty meeting locations, but all of it is to be turned into a new hotel property.
West Elm is also launching new hotels in Savannah, Minneapolis, Indianapolis and Detroit.
“After 26 consecutive quarters of double-digit comparative growth, including our successful entry into the commercial furnishings market with West Elm Workspace, we’ve created an active bond with our customers that can extend beyond home and work,” Jim Brett, president of West Elm, in a statement in September when the company's hospitality push was first announced. “By adapting the framework design of each hotel to reflect the mood and identity of its host city, we will continue to engage the adventurous spirit of our customers as they follow us to our next level of hospitality.”