Whitney Hotel sold: condos next?

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December 6, 2004 // UPDATED 4:51 pm - April 25, 2007
By: Sarah McKenzie
Sarah McKenzie

Downtown developer Ned Abdul, president of Swervo Development, has negotiated a $4.65 million deal with the Wells Fargo Trust division to take over ownership of the Whitney Hotel on Downtown's riverfront.

Abdul said he hasn't decided on his plans for the Whitney Hotel. Either opening a new boutique hotel or converting the building to condos is a possibility. The developer said he planned to make a decision on redevelopment by early next year.

Swervo Development has redeveloped several Downtown properties recently, including The Lenox, a 24-unit condo conversion at 521 S. 9th St., and the American Trio building, a seven-story condo project at 616 S. 3rd St. The developer also plans to convert the Sexton Building, 521 S. 7th St., into 110 live-work lofts.

Abdul has obtained a sheriff's certificate for the property at 150 Portland Ave., which confers ownership to Swervo Development on Jan. 29 if the property's current owner fails to pay off an $8.4 million debt on the Whitney.

Wells Fargo's Trust Division held an auction on the property in October. Chicago-based Standard Mills Ltd. Partners is the current owner of the 96-room hotel. The former grain mill was converted to a luxury hotel in 1983 and was closed in 2003 to prepared for a planned condo conversion that later stalled, according to a recent article in Finance and Commerce.