Leisure demand generated by Arundel Mills Mall, the Harbor Place waterfront, Downtown Baltimore attractions, and professional sporting events provides hotels with significant compression. A new Horseshoe Casino is scheduled to open in Baltimore in 2014 near M&T Bank Stadium. The $400-million project is expected to generate 1,700 jobs and attract sizable leisure demand upon opening. This could prompt the addition of a new hotel near the casino, as only one hotel exists nearby, the Holiday Inn Express Baltimore at the Stadiums.
A renovation of the Baltimore Convention Center (BCC) was completed in 2012, and the venue may undergo a 200,000- to 300,000-square-foot expansion in the future. In addition to the expansion, an 18,500-seat Inner Harbor arena and a 500-unit full-service hotel connected to the BCC would be developed on adjacent parcels; the proposed hotel would take the place of the existing Sheraton Inner Harbor on Charles Street. This project is still in the feasibility stage and is contingent on both private and public funds. City officials expect that the proposed expansion would be completed between 2016 and 2020.
The number of events and delegates decreased in the 2011/12 fiscal year, following a promising rebound in 2010/11. The Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors Association (BACVA) has since ramped up efforts to increase convention bookings, partnering with the BCC and local hoteliers to increase production, streamline sales processes, and identify opportunities for future business.
New Hotel Supply Update
The Four Seasons Baltimore, the city’s most recent new hotel, opened in November of 2011. Hotel projects in the planning stages include the following:
• The proposed Crowne Plaza hotel, located at 1 East Redwood Street/15-19 South Charles Street, will feature 173 guestrooms, with retail on the ground floor. The mixed-use development is slated for completion in July of 2014.
• The 208-key Harbor East Hyatt Place development at 511 South Central Avenue is expected to open in September of 2014, with construction expected to begin by the end of 2013.
• The proposed 42-key La Quinta Inn & Suites, located at 200 West Saratoga Street, is scheduled for completion by the end of 2013.
• The Inn at Government House, located at 1125 North Calvert Street, is slated to open in April of 2014. The boutique hotel will feature 18 luxury rooms.
Hotel projects anticipated but not begun include: 90- to 100-room extended-stay hotel at the UMB BioPark; a 270-room, upscale, full-service hotel at Wills Pier as part of the Harbor Point master plan (scheduled for completion in 2015); a 194-room, extended-stay hotel at 880 North Wolfe Street, near the John Hopkins’ Science & Technology Park. Construction is expected to begin by December of 2014 and reach completion by late 2016.