Benchmark to manage, reposition two Florida resort hotels

The Grand Plaza Beach Hotel & Beach Resort is slated for a major renovation now that it's been purchased by Gencom. Photo credit: Grand Plaza Beach Hotel & Beach Resort

Benchmark, a global hospitality company, will manage, renovate and reposition two properties on St. Pete Beach, Fla., a destination off the coast of St. Petersburg in Tampa Bay, following the hotels' acquisition by Benchmark's partner, Gencom, through an agreement that was formed in 2016. 

The Beachcomber Beach Resort and Hotel and The Grand Plaza Beach Hotel & Beach Resort were purchased by Gencom for a reported price of $100 million, and through a partnership with Aimbridge Gencom will commit an additional $24 million for major renovations to upgrade the two properties.

Each hotel commands a beachfront location overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. The high-rise Grand Plaza Beach Hotel & Beach Resort offers 156 rooms including 14 suites with balconies and sea views. The property offers four food-and-beverage outlets and roomservice, as well as 8,000 square feet of event space.

The low-rise Beachcomber Beach Resort and Hotel offers 102 rooms and two restaurants. The hotel also provides two swimming pools and live entertainment at Jimmy B’s bar.

Benchmark currently manages six Florida resorts in Orlando, Vero Beach, Miami and Hallandale Beach. The St. Pete Beach hotels mark the company's entrance to the Gulf Coast.

“We are very excited to add these iconic hotels to our portfolio and to expand the company's presence in Florida, where Benchmark already has significant infrastructure, support and expertise in the Florida market,” Greg Champion, president & COO of Benchmark, said in a statement.

In addition to the planned $24 million renovation and repositioning plan, Benchmark also will provide proprietary support. Rikki Boparai, Benchmark VP of operations, will support the property directly.

“There is a seasoned and professional staff on site at both properties, and as we add the exclusive resources of Benchmark and our extensive home office support we look forward to taking the properties to new levels of performance, productivity and popularity," Boparai said in a statement.