The facilty will feature a six-story tower with 130 guest rooms plus restaurant and 24 meeting rooms.
BELLEVILLE – The first totally new hotel to be built in Belleville in 55 years will be a six-story Hyatt Place tower with an adjoining conference center and full-service restaurant on Illinois State Route 15 across from the main entrance to the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows.
Officials made the announcement this afternoon in a press conference at the Shrine.
Construction of the 130-room hotel and 40,000-square-foot conference center will begin in the spring, with completion expected about 18 months later, according to Chane Keller, vice-president of Oak Tree Management Services. Oak Tree Management is developing the 33-acre site and will operate the hotel/conference center.
“This Hyatt Place hotel with its national reservation system and the adjoining internationally recognized Hofbräuhaus restaurant are significant milestones for Belleville,” Keller said.
“Add this state-of-the-art conference and meeting center with a ballroom for 1,500 people and Belleville will have a world-class hospitality complex,” Keller added.
“The combination of these facilities will draw business and leisure travelers from throughout the Midwest. We plan to work with all other entertainment facilities and tourism groups in the area, including Gateway International Raceway, the Casino Queen, Fairmount Park race track, the Blues hockey team and the Cardinals baseball team plus the St. Louis Sports Commission and the St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission as well as Illinois South Tourism,” Keller said. “We will do our best to maximize interest in visiting Belleville, Southwestern Illinois and St. Louis.”
Construction and design costs for the hotel, restaurant and conference center are estimated at about $28 million, Keller said.
Belleville Mayor Mark Eckert noted that the Hyatt Place, the adjoining restaurant and the conference center probably will add up to 150 jobs for the area.
“The conference center is especially exciting, with the large ballroom and plans to include up to 24 separate break-out rooms for both large and small groups,” Eckert said.
“Belleville has worked toward this day for a long time,” Eckert added. “Many people have contributed and have worked hard for this for several years, so today we thank everyone for their patience and for their foresight.”
The Hyatt Place hotel will offer a wide range of services and amenities, including:
• Complimentary hot breakfasts for guests.
• 24-hour restaurant.
• 24-hour gym featuring cardio equipment with LCD touchscreens.
• 25-yard swimming pool for recreational use and exercise.
• Cocktail bar featuring specialty coffees and premium beverages.
• Complimentary Wi-Fi.
• 24-hour business center.
• 5,000-square-feet of meeting space within the hotel, separate from conference center.
ICON Commercial Lending, Inc., (www.ICONcl.com) has invested in a partnership with Oak Tree Management to own the hotel/conference center/restaurant and has guaranteed up to $30 million for construction, according to ICON Managing Director Randall Farr.
“We at ICON are excited about participating in this Hyatt Place hotel/conference center project with Oak Tree Management and the Keller Family. We believe this overall development will be a huge benefit to the City of Belleville, to St. Clair County and to the entire St. Louis area,” Farr said.
The hotel at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows will remain open and under Shrine management until the Hyatt Place complex opens. Current plans are for the 70-room hotel then to be closed and the building re-purposed for another use, not yet determined, according to Chris Diehl, the Shrine’s guest services and marketing manager.
Building construction of the $12 million, 1,000-seat Hofbräuhaus restaurant in the same development is expected to be completed in January, with installation and testing of brewing equipment imported from Germany in January and February. Opening date will be determined when satisfactory production at the on-site brewery is established.
Site preparation is expected to resume soon, to be followed by the installation of streets, curbing, parking lots and utilities.
Construction details for the previously announced Jack Flash convenience store and fuel station are nearing completion, with building expected to begin in the spring.