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BPG sells Riverfront hotel for $26M

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Homewood Suites Wilmington Buccini/Pollin Group Riverfront

The Buccini/Pollin Group (BPG) has sold the Homewood Suites hotel in Wilmington’s Riverfront to a Virginia investment firm. | DBT PHOTO BY JACOB OWENS

WILMINGTON – Buccini/Pollin Group (BPG) has sold its Homewood Suites by Hilton Wilmington Downtown hotel to a Virginia real estate investment firm for more than $26 million, according to county land records.

Acquiring the hotel in the June 29 sale was SAK Developers, a firm that has a portfolio of hotels in the Washington, D.C. area and Virginia Beach, Va. It was founded by partners Waheed Ashiq, Vipul Kapila, and Khurram Sindhu. The firm did not respond to a request for comment on the acquisition.

The Homewood Suites, opened in the fall of 2019, offers extended-stay suites with one or two bedrooms with full kitchens and fridges. It joined a growing Riverfront area along with BPG’s Westin and the Onix Group’s Hyatt Place hotels to build a base for conventions and events at the nearby Chase Center on the Riverfront.

“We developed a hotel that we thought would complement what was already in the marketplace, especially the hotels that we own and operate including the Westin, Hotel du Pont and the Double Tree Hilton, so it was kind of a unique offering in the market,” said Dave Pollin, a co-founder of BPG who oversees its hotel acquisition, development and management arm, PM Hotel Group.

SAK was introduced to BPG through a broker, and it was their first deal in Delaware, Pollin told Delaware Business Times. The $26 million sale, translating to a per unit price of more than $216,000 for its 120 rooms, is the first deal in Wilmington for a non-distressed, non-value-add asset in many years.

“There has not been a recent sale of value you would see in Washington, Philadelphia, New York, Boston, etc., and that’s what this is, which is why we think it’s such an important milestone,” Pollin added.

Notably, deals for assets like hotels and office buildings have slowed as interest rates have risen to fight inflation and debt markets have tightened. The sale of the Homewood Suites despite those challenges, and with the involvement of a mortgagor, Atlantic Union Bank, that had never invested in a Wilmington property to date were more good signs, Pollin said.

“It’s another sign that the profile of the city and the number of organizations that consider it institutional quality is growing,” he said.

BPG doesn’t plan to part with any of its other three hotels in the Wilmington area, and PM Hotel Group will remain as the day-to-day manager of the Homewood Suites, Pollin noted.

Meanwhile, BPG’s hotel arm is not slowing down despite the rising cost of building, recently announcing a luxury lifestyle W Hotel brand in Orlando that will be located near a $6 billion expansion of the Universal Studios theme park.

“With interest rates where they are now, not that many groups are able to get projects moving,” he said, noting that average annual hotel supply construction will likely be halved over the next decade as a result. “Meanwhile, we see demand growth continuing so that’s a really exciting prospect for us. We think it’s going to yield some great results.”

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