HOUSTON, Texas—Houstonian Dan Friedkin, through his hospitality investment company Iconic Properties, has purchased Aspen’s historic Hotel Jerome, an Auberge Resort, from Chicago-based DRW Real Estate. The purchase is part of Friedkin’s further expansion in the hospitality industry, following his 2013 investment in Auberge Resorts Collection, in which he became a majority owner and assumed the role of chairman of the board. Auberge will continue its management of the luxury hotel.
The 93-room Jerome completed a top-to-bottom revitalization in 2012 under DRW’s ownership and direction and re-opened as an Auberge Resort. Known since the 19th century as the social hub of Aspen, the re-envisioned hotel balances preservation and luxury with its character and architectural details intact. Guestrooms and suites feature 21st century luxuries, and redesigned public spaces include Prospect, an American bistro; a relaxed new Living Room bar and lounge; a new Auberge Spa; and a refreshed look for the J-Bar, an Aspen institution. First opened in 1889, the Jerome pioneered new levels of innovation and luxury at the height of Aspen’s boomtown silver-mining era and is often described as Aspen’s “crown jewel.” Hotel Jerome was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1986.
For Friedkin, a longtime Colorado property holder, Aspen has special significance. “My family and I have enjoyed many years of visiting and owning residences in Aspen, and it’s a very special place to me personally,” he said. “I could not be more pleased to welcome Hotel Jerome into our investment portfolio. It has an enviable and storied history as a landmark American hotel, and it is most certainly one of the flagship properties of the Auberge Resorts Collection. I commend Don Wilson, the managing partner of DRW Real Estate, for bringing the Jerome back to glory, and I’m honored to take stewardship of the hotel ensuring it remains one of the great hotels of the United States.”
“We fully support Dan Friedkin and Auberge Resorts in this transition” Wilson said. “Under Dan’s stewardship and Auberge’s management, Hotel Jerome has a very bright future.”
The Jerome purchase supports Friedkin’s strategy to develop a world-class hotel investment brand that owns and, through Auberge Resorts Collection, operates one-of-a-kind luxury properties. On a personal front, it reflects his life-long passion for outdoor pursuits and adventure, an interest that dovetails with many of his business ventures. As Chairman and CEO of The Friedkin Group, Friedkin manages investments across a diverse array of private businesses, including entertainment, aviation, wholesale and retail automotive distribution, and high-end hospitality asset development. Friedkin oversees Legendary Expeditions, a luxury adventure travel operator with access to more than 6 million acres in Tanzania. Under Friedkin’s leadership, his family directs substantial amounts of philanthropy to proven, tactical approaches in environmental stewardship, the preservation of wildlife, and community development both in their home state of Texas and internationally.