- February 28, 2014
Ocean Properties Hotels Resorts & Affiliates' plan to revamp the Sandcastle Resort on Sarasota's Lido Beach is drawing praise from a key hotel broker, who says that it will succeed despite a plethora of new rooms under construction in the city's downtown.
“It's a really smart move for them,” says Kent Schwarz, executive vice president of Colliers International Tampa Bay's hotel practice. “There's no reason that the Sandcastle, when completed, won't compete with the best hotel offerings in Clearwater or St. Petersburg.”
Ocean Properties earlier this month filed plans in Sarasota to raze the existing 64-year-old Sandcastle property on 6.1 beachfront acres and build a total of 304 rooms in twin towers. Designs call for the addition of 128 new rooms and meeting and restaurant space.
Land Resource Strategies' President Bruce Franklin, who is working with Ocean Properties, says the redevelopment is being undertaken now to remain competitive and make it more contemporary. The new hotel could open in 2019.
Ocean Properties' plans come as roughly 1,000 new hotel rooms are being constructed or planned in downtown Sarasota, but Schwarz says the new downtown properties won't impact the beach.
“Every hotel property on Lido Beach is running at more than 80% occupancy at present, and with some outstanding room rates,” he says. “I'm not at all concerned by all the development taking place around downtown as it relates to this property.”
Schwarz notes that Ocean Properties' Lido Beach Resort, which is less than a mile from the Sandcastle and decades newer, is garnering room rates of between $500 and $900 per night this month. The Sandcastle, by comparison, is generating average room rates of $312 nightly.