Interesting Article From Saratogian About Excess of Hotel Rooms In Saratoga Springs

Below is an excerpt from an article by Paul Post on hotel expansions and over abundance of rooms.

By Paul Post, The Saratogian

Posted: 03/30/16, 4:07 PM EDT | Updated: 1 day ago

New hotels outpace demand: Room rate down in first quarter

First quarter hotel room occupancy is down 12 percent in the greater Saratoga area, officials said Wednesday.

The downturn is blamed on fewer business guests from GlobalFoundries and General Electric Co., a mild winter that deterred skiers, and more new hotel rooms that affects the overall occupancy rate.

Room occupancy was 48 percent this winter compared to a first-quarter record 60 percent last year, said Cindy Hollowood, Holiday Inn general manager.

“As a region we are struggling with too many hotel rooms,” she said.

Two new facilities – one each in Clifton Park and at Exit 12 in Malta – are scheduled to open this year. Also, work is nearing completion on a new hotel at Saratoga Casino & Raceway and a large six-story Courtyard Marriott in Lake George.

In addition, another two hotels are proposed for Malta, the Adelphi Hotel in downtown Saratoga Springs is expected to reopen next year, and plans call for a new hotel at the former Weathervane Restaurant site on Route 9.

Likewise, plans are in the works for three new lodging establishments at Exit 18 in Queensbury, and a large new casino hotel in Schenectady.

Saratoga County alone is expected to have 750 more rooms by the end of 2017, said Todd Shimkus, Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce president.

The industry’s goal is to sell out every night. So the area’s hospitality and tourism trade would have to generate an additional 273,750 room sales per year to meet this benchmark, he said.

“The supply is going up,” Shimkus said. “We’ve got to make sure demand goes with it. Last year, a very good year, demand rose 9 percent, but supply increased 13 percent at the same time.”


OMG, Notorious Blogger Supports Bonacio Project!

Celebrity Developer and Blogger Make Nice
Moore Hall Plan-31
Top is aerial view of building positions Bottom is streetscape
Moore Hall Plan-30
View of Existing Buildings Streetscape of Existing Buildings

Three of us met with Sonny Bonacio in his office at 18 Division Street to review his new plans for replacing Moore Hall.  At the last Zoning Board of Appeals meeting some months ago he announced plans to demolish Moore Hall and build twenty-eight condos.  His latest plan is to build twenty-six. 

The price range is still around $700,000.00 per condo.  He indicated that he would incorporate the parking on site with most of it underground. 

The design looks quite good.  The project will match the height of the adjacent buildings.  The architecture will also be designed in a way that is consistent with the surrounding Victorian era homes.  The set back from Union Avenue will be consistent with the adjacent properties.

My only reservation is that to do this will require an extraordinary area variance.  In this case, though I do not believe the variances will have an adverse effect on the neighborhood.  The removal of Moore Hall will certainly be an improvement and this new Bonacio plan will be consistent with the density and character of this area of town. An additional major improvement will be the project’s provision for sufficient on site parking.

We had some discussion about the impact on North Lane which is quite narrow but currently two-way.  North Lane empties on to Regent Street.  Mr. Bonacio acknowledged that in view of the increased traffic it would probably be advisable to have the street be one way with the entrance of Regent and exit on Clark.  He indicated his willingness to work with the city to upgrade the intersection to improve its safety.

I was kind of amused in meeting with Sonny Bonacio by the contrast between the very beautiful and obviously expensive design of his offices and himself in jeans and funky athletic shirt.

I am attaching his full application here.

Below are the designs.

Moore Hall Plan-37
View From Union Avenue


Moore Hall Plan-36
Top Picture Is Row House Facing White Street Bottom is side view


Moore Hall Plan-35
Carriage House East Elevation
Moore Hall Plan-34
Top are carriage houses facing North Lane Bottom are back views with garages facing inward to courtyard
Moore Hall Plan-33
Top is main house looking South into courtyard with entrance to underground garage Bottom is same house but the facing West
Moore Hall Plan-32
Main Condo Facing Union Avenue