RLJ Lodging Trust expected to sell Florida's Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg

The Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club, Florida. Photo credit: Marriott International(Image: Marriott International)

RLJ Lodging Trust is expected to sell off the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort and Golf Club in Florida this summer. Barbara Readey, GM at the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg, told the Tampa Bay Times that RLJ "likely will have the broker do a value assessment and go from there."
"RLJ’s portfolio does not align with complex upscale resorts, so it is very likely they will sell us off," Readey said in a statement. She added that Marriott will continue managing the hotel under the Renaissance brand. 

The hotel will continue to see updates, courtesy of RLJ, as it enters the next phase of refurbishments, which will include a new spa and fitness center. Construction on this phase will begin March 12 and end roughly one year later. The final phase—a new parking garage and tennis courts—will be complete in 2019.

RLJ Lodging acquired Maryland-based FelCor Lodging Trust in a $1-billion acquisition in August 2017, merging with the company to develop a portfolio of 160 hotels with 31,467 guestrooms in 26 states and the District of Columbia. The portfolio included the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort and Golf Club. 

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FelCor purchased the Vinoy Renaissance resort in 2007. The trust invested more than $50 million on renovations for the property, which included upgrades on the guestrooms, the golf course and the clubhouse. The new restaurant, Paul's Landing, was also added to the property and opened this month.

The Vinoy, St. Petersburg originally opened in 1925. The U.S. Army Air Forces and U.S. Maritime Commission leased the property during World War II and operated it as a training center and housing for military cooks and bakers. 

The property reopened to the public in 1944, but closed again in 1974. The hotel later opened once again in 1992 as a Stouffer Hotel following renovations by New York developer Fred Guest. The Renaissance Hotel Group purchased the hotel a year later and rebranded it. The hotel is currently listed on the National Register of Historic Places.