Alexandria, La., seeks consulting agreement with hotel managers

Alexandria officials will work toward a consulting agreement with the company managing the Alexander Fulton Hotel for advice on ways to get the most out of the downtown convention-related facilities, including the Riverfront Center.

The details of the consultation haven't yet been worked out, but the City Council on Tuesday approved an ordinance for the city to enter into an agreement with Discount Realty, doing business as Windfeel Properties, which has been managing the Alexander Fulton Hotel since September 2013.

The approval is to ensure "the continuing operations, management and sale of the Alexander Fulton Hotel and Convention Center in furtherance of the stated and adopted goals of the downtown hotel initiative …"

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The ordinance passed by a vote of 4-3, but it was an unusual alliance on the "no" votes. The councilmen voting against it were Lee Rubin, Ed Larvadain III and Jules Green. Rubin, who raised questions about any marketing expertise Windfeel Properties can offer, has rarely, if ever, voted with Larvadain and Green on issues when the council vote was 4-3.

Mayor Jacques Roy said any agreement with Windfeel Properties would be "budget-neutral," and if any additional funding would be needed, the matter would go back before the council. It also would return to the full council if any council member objects to the agreement once it is fleshed out through negotiations.