Four Points by Sheraton nears Hollywood Park approval

Web Posted Posted: 12/14/07 3:49 PM

The town of Hollywood Park is one step closer to welcoming a Four Points by Sheraton hotel to the corner of U.S. Highway 281 and Pantheon Way, as a special use permit for the hotel was recently approved by the city’s zoning commission.

City Council will have final say when it holds another public hearing on the matter Dec. 16, but the permit was unanimously approved by the zoning commission.

“As you already know,” said Talley Williams of Drenner & Golden Stuart Wolff, the developer’s law firm, to the commission, “hotels generate a lot of occupancy tax and property tax.”

Williams said her firm and Galo Properties, which will develop the hotel, expect the property will generate nearly $25,000 after it opens in 2009, then close to $1.5 million and $3 million within five and 10 years, respectively.

The site will feature a new Starwood hotel, called Four Points by Sheraton, which was created to compete with the Courtyard by Marriott and Hilton Garden Inn hotels.

“It’s an excellent hotel for a business traveler or a vacationer,” said Geoff Bley, spokesman for Galo Properties.

The hotel’s 130 guest rooms will be offered for $125 to $140 a night, Bley said, and the hotel will house meeting space, a full bar and outdoor swimming pool, and will serve hot breakfasts and dinner.

At the zoning commission, one resident was concerned that the Hollywood Park Fire Department did not have a tall enough ladder truck to properly serve the Four Points by Sheraton, planned to stand six stories high.

“Getting to the roof, I can’t say it cannot be done,” said Hollywood Park Fire Chief John Butrico, “but I can say our equipment will be in harm’s way.”

He said the city’s ladder truck works to a 70-foot height, and in order to fight a fire on the building’s roof, the truck would have to be in the collapse zone, placing it and firefighters inside in danger.

“We’re looking at the worst, worst, worst case scenario,” said commission chair Carolyn Olivera.

The building will be fully-sprinklered, she said, and since the fire department is so close to the site, fighting a fire from the building’s roof, done typically in extreme fires, most likely would not occur.

Bley said he anticipates the hotel will benefit from the toll road scheduled for U.S. 281, north of Loop 1604, as “increased traffic will bring more people by the property,” since people will no longer avoid U.S. 281.

Galo Properties bought the 3.73-acre tract and an adjacent site on Pantheon Way in 2006. Construction on the hotel will begin in the first or second quarter of 2008, he said, and the Four Points by Sheraton should open in spring of 2009.

Next to the hotel, Galo Properties plans to build Pantheon Plaza, a 15,000-square foot office building.