NEW YORK—Carey Watermark Investors (CWI) has acquired, from an affiliate of Goldman Sachs and Petra Capital Management, the Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa, a 511-unit golf resort and spa in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
The resort includes both traditional hotel guestrooms located in a seven-story tower and rooms located in 81 resort villas with golf course and water views. Other highlights include a 25,000 square-foot spa with 19 treatments rooms, a 2,700 square-foot fitness center, 70,000 square feet of meeting space, a main pool and children’s pool, and eight food and beverage outlets.
The property is located 18 miles from downtown Jacksonville and about a two-hour drive to Orlando. It offers direct access to two championship golf courses, including the world-renowned Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass.
CWI’s all-in basis is attractive compared to both replacement cost and sales of comparable resorts. The resort underwent an extensive $20.3 million renovation in early 2014, which included the lobby, all meeting and event spaces, food and beverage outlets, all villa guestrooms, tower suites, and enhancements to the Cabana Beach Club. CWI plans to spend an additional $25 million to further enhance the property and the guest experience.
As part of CWI’s acquisition, Marriott International has assumed management of the resort. As a result, the resort will be able to utilize Marriott’s reservation system and loyalty program, as well as its brand recognition and demand among both domestic and international travelers.
“The Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa is well-positioned as one of Florida’s leading resorts, offering unparalleled access to PGA-affiliated golf facilities and unique beachfront club amenities,” said Michael G. Medzigian, chief executive officer of CWI. “We are thrilled to add this high quality, recognized property to CWI’s portfolio. Given our ability to purchase the property at an attractive price, the recent renovations and our planned improvements over the next five years, we believe this investment is an excellent addition to our portfolio that will benefit our investors.”