DETROIT—Oxford Capital Group and Hunter Pasteur break ground on The Godfrey Hotel Detroit in historic Corktown, bringing a 227-room, lifestyle brand hotel with amenities, as well as hundreds of jobs, with many going to Detroit residents.
The property is scheduled to open in 2023. Oxford’s wholly owned management affiliate, Oxford Hotels & Resorts, LLC, will manage the property. The 227-room, seven-story hotel will feature I|O, Detroit’s largest indoor/outdoor rooftop lounge with views of downtown Detroit and Corktown, a ground-floor restaurant, a lobby bar, a 5,500 square foot ballroom that will accommodate events of more than 350 guests, and a fitness center. The hotel will have a soft brand affiliation with Hilton’s Curio Collection.
The Godfrey will also create an estimated 200 to 300 construction jobs and an estimated 160 to 200 part- and full-time jobs, the latter of which include a 401(k) and health insurance and will pay a minimum of $17 an hour. The developer has committed that at least 25 percent of these jobs will go to residents of Detroit. The developers will partner with the city’s Detroit at Work Program as the hotel’s priority staffing partner.
“We are excited to achieve this important milestone as we continue our strategic national investment, development, and acquisition activities while simultaneously growing our lifestyle Godfrey hotel brand throughout the country. The project will be just a few blocks from Michigan Central Station, Ford’s new billion-dollar campus, and a significant development in Detroit’s resurgence,” said John W. Rutledge, founder, chairman, and CEO of Oxford Hotels & Resorts LLC and Oxford Capital Group LLC. “Since my student days at The University of Michigan, I have been watching Detroit closely and have been impressed by the remarkable transformation that has occurred downtown. We look forward to adding to this momentum and delivering a stunning physical product, as well as Oxford’s unique brand of hospitality to this beautiful and dynamic city as Detroit and the country continue their post-pandemic recovery over the next several years.”
“Corktown has become synonymous with phenomenal food and drink and is home to an emerging business core,” said Randy Wertheimer, president and CEO of Hunter Pasteur. “The Godfrey Hotel will fill a real need in this neighborhood, and we’re so thrilled to bring this national hotel brand to our hometown. We look forward to the Godfrey becoming a staple of the city and Corktown community, not just because of the hotel, but also the exciting F&B venues we are developing, including the lobby bar, restaurant, rooftop lounge, and ballroom, which we hope will all become important destination venues for locals and travelers alike to Detroit.”
The interiors of the hotel, designed by The Gettys Group, are inspired by the local diversity and the industrial aesthetics of the area’s restoration spirit. An interior with a neutral background has furniture and finishes that are saturated in color, geometries, patterns, and accents. The mixed warm wood tones, the terrazzo flooring, textured metals found in lighting and detailing, and touches of finishes that offer dimension further the identity of the hotel as connecting the guest with the elements. Guestrooms have appointments featuring warm furniture tones and accents set against a bright and clean backdrop.
The hotel’s event and dining experiences are designed to be a destination for visitors, both local and from out of town. The I|O Rooftop Lounge will provide a relaxed experience offering a variety of spaces throughout. The interior design is moody as the day transitions to night, enhanced through mixed metals. With aspects of earth, wind, water, and fire, the retractable glass roof and windows allow guests to experience the elements. The hotel will also offer one of the largest meeting spaces in and out of downtown Detroit with warm wood tones and crafted details.
“We view Detroit as a compelling hotel investment market given all the existing and new demand being created by the dozens of recent and forthcoming corporate relocations and expansions downtown,” said Matthew Kalt, vice president of Oxford Capital Group, LLC.
The Godfrey Hotel Detroit will add to Oxford’s current and historical portfolio of more than 15,000 hotel rooms. Current Godfrey Hotel locations include Chicago, Boston, Tampa, Hollywood, and others in planning and development. The hotel will benefit from Oxford’s national hotel management experience, which includes food and beverage offerings; revenue management, social media, direct sales, e-commerce, and marketing strategies; its ability to run profitable rooms and meeting and event venues; recruiting, training, and retention methods; and cost control initiatives.
The project investors include several Detroit families. The Godfrey Hotel Detroit will also benefit from Oxford’s metro Detroit-based development partner Hunter Pasteur’s local development experience and relationships. Oxford, Hunter Pasteur, and The Forbes Co. are finalizing plans to launch the Perennial Corktown Apartments adjacent to the Godfrey, which will also break ground this year.