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Hotel bequeathed to dog has new owner

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  • | 5:02 p.m. February 12, 2014
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  • Manatee-Sarasota
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SARASOTA — Ocean Properties, a hotel management company with more than 35 properties in Florida, including several prominent Gulf Coast resorts, has purchased the Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel on Lido Beach in Sarasota.

Terms of the deal, announced in a release today, weren't disclosed. Officials with Delray Beach-based Ocean Properties say the 177-room hotel, built in 1953, will still offer most of the same services, from corporate retreats to beach weddings. But it will do it under a new name: the Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach.

The hotel made national news in 2007 when real estate mogul Leona Helmsley bequeathed it to her Maltese dog, Trouble, when she died. Trouble died later that year at the Sandcastle, which reverted the hotel's ownership to the Helmsley Charitable Trust. It was listed for sale last year.

“This purchase reflects the long-term commitment of ownership to the local community and the substantial investment that will continue to support economic development for the region,” Andy Berger, Ocean Properties vice president of operations, says in a release. “We value our relationships with the area's business and tourism organizations that play a significant role in the fabric of this community and we look forward to continuing and enhancing those partnerships.”

Ocean Properties owns more than 100 hotels spread from Arizona to Maine, plus Canada and the Caribbean. Its properties on the Gulf Coast include the Resort at Longboat Key Club; the Edgewater Beach Hotel in Naples; and the Sandpearl Resort on Clearwater Beach. The firm also owns more than a dozen properties in New England.


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