- October 27, 2022
CHARLOTTE HARBOR — One of the most anticipated tourism development projects in decades in Charlotte County, Sunseeker Resort Charlotte Harbor, plans to restart construction after a 17-month COVID-19 forced shutdown.
Officials with Allegiant Travel Co., the airline behind the project, are expected to discuss the restart at a press conference next week, according to a media advisory statement.
Sunseeker Resort, even before COVID-19 derailed it, was an ambitious undertaking, to turn 25 waterfront acres into a mid-level cost tourist destination for Allegiant’s cost-conscious customers. Plans included a hotel and nine condo towers, in addition to restaurants, bars and retail stores. Phase I, underway, included some 510 hotel rooms, 180 extended-stay suite units and meeting and conference space. Allegiant paid $35 million for the land, and in early 2019 it had secured at least $175 million in financing from investment firm TPG Sixth Street.
Allegiant suspended construction of the project in March 2020. In a May 2020 earnings report the company said “All non-airline subsidiary spend has been suspended indefinitely,” adding it will take a $137 million impairment on Sunseeker. “We have said from the outset the most important component of our model is the airline,” Allegiant President John Redmond said in an earnings report call, according to a transcript posted on Seeking Alpha. “We have to do everything we can to preserve the cash register.”
In May contractors took down six cranes that lined the Sunseeker Resort property and removed other construction gear.