A guilty pleasure, Steinway returns

After 20 years of being away, the ornately decorated Steinway piano that long graced the St. Anthony Hotel’s Peacock Alley cocktail lounge has returned. The piano is said to have been built for the Russian Embassy in Paris and housed in the Soviet Embassy in Washington, D.C., although there’s no proof to back either claim. What is known is that it was first brought to San Antonio in 1938 by Ralph W. Morrison, at the time owner of the St. Anthony Hotel, where it was the musical centerpiece for more than 50 years.

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BC Lynd and CrossHarbor Capital Partners Acquire Six Marriott Hotels in the Midwest and Southwest

San Antonio, TX – November 20, 2013 – BC Lynd Hospitality, a full service hotel management and investment company, and CrossHarbor Capital Partners LLC, a seasoned investor in a variety of opportunistic and value-oriented commercial real estate transactions, have joined together to extend their respective national hospitality footprints with the acquisition of six Marriott-branded properties.

“We see a strong upside with the implementation of our business plan and management strategy, which coupled with CrossHarbor’s outstanding acumen in the real estate business provides an excellent platform for creating value in the hotel space,” said BC Lynd chief executive officer Brandon S. Raney.

The hotels add portfolio depth and advance the companies’ acquisition plans, said chief investment officer Clyde J.B. Johnson IV. “CrossHarbor and BC Lynd each operate on disciplined acquisition criteria and look forward to executing on future similar opportunities together.”

Bank of America N.A., in coordination with Holiday Fenoglio Fowler, provided an acquisition-and-improvement loan to finance the transaction.

“In partnership with BC Lynd we identified an off-market portfolio where the conditions exist to improve operating performance through professional management strategies and value added capital improvements,” said Eric S. Boyd, a Principal of CrossHarbor Capital Partners LLC. “These properties diversify our portfolio of twenty-four select and limited service hotel assets across the United States.”

The transaction included six (6) hotels carrying the TownePlace Suites, SpringHill Suites, and Fairfield Inn brands located across four Midwest and Southwest states. The purchase price was not disclosed.

Las Cruces, NM- TownePlace Suites
Las Cruces, NM- Fairfield Inn
Council Bluffs, Iowa- Springhill Suites
Lawrence, Kansas- Springhill Suites
Overland Park, Kansas- TownePlace Suites
Evansville, Indiana- Fairfield Inn

ABOUT BC LYND

San Antonio-based BC Lynd Hospitality, LLC, is a full service real estate investment firm focused on the acquisition and management of hotel properties in the select-service, extended-stay and full-service categories, preferably located in the top 50 U.S. markets. BC Lynd is currently in operation in five states. For more information, visit www.bclynd.com.

ABOUT CROSSHARBOR CAPITAL PARTNERS LLC

CrossHarbor Capital Partners LLC is a Boston-based alternative investment management firm that invests in value-add and opportunistic commercial real estate transactions. The firm seeks short and medium duration debt and equity investments that offer a compelling case for generating high absolute returns. CrossHarbor was founded in 1993 and has invested in more than $13 billion of commercial real estate on behalf of a diversified and highly regarded group of domestic and foreign institutional investors.

St. Anthony Hotel seeking to recapture glory of its past

If the walls of the St. Anthony Hotel could talk, they could offer an endless supply of cherished memories, tales about historic events and lifelong relationships.

So as part of a planned

$24 million renovation of the 104-year-old downtown hotel, BC Lynd Hospitality, owner-manager of the St. Anthony, has issued a call for stories, photos and other mementos of the hotel.

“We want to re-establish the history and get people talking about their background in association with the hotel,” said Clyde Johnson IV, chief investment officer with the national firm, which acquired the hotel a year ago. More–>

Storied Piano to Return to St. Anthony Hotel as Part of Revitalization

Antique recovered as part of larger plan to restore the hotel’s golden age grandeur

San Antonio, TX – March 22, 2013 – BC Lynd Hospitality, a growing hospitality investment and management firm, has announced that the antique piano that once adorned the Peacock Alley cocktail lounge of the St. Anthony Hotel will soon be returning home. The beautifully ornate Steinway Model L Player Piano was sold Monday for $220,000 by Bonham’s auction house in San Francisco to a member of the investment group that acquired the hotel last May. The purchase comes at the commencement of a remodel project that plans to reintroduce the landmark as a premier hotel in 2014.

“We want this to be a place where San Antonians come to enjoy downtown and everything it has to offer.”

As the winning bid was announced, St. Anthony partners shook hands and celebrated. The acquisition of the piano is considered a major victory in recent hotel efforts to recover authentic period décor, including antique French furnishings and original artwork, which have been lost in past renovations and shuffles of ownership. Brandon S. Raney, CEO of the investment firm, said phones were “ringing off the hook” Monday with calls from supporters, one of which was former St. Anthony General Manager Nick Ghawi.

“The piano is part of the hotel, and I’m happy it’s back in San Antonio where it belongs,” says Ghawi, who made sure to pose for a photo with the piano before it left the hotel in 1993. During his tenure, the piano was a fixture of the hotel’s popular Sunday brunches, where musicians were often commissioned to play. Says Ghawi, “The piano was the center of attention. Professionals would come to play it. Guests would occasionally sit down and play it. It was very special.”

The recovery of the piano comes at a historic time of change for the St. Anthony. The hotel is in the early stages of a major remodel project and just this month asked former and current patrons to help contribute stories and photographs to the hotel’s history. This focus on preservation fits in with BC Lynd Hospitality’s vision of the St. Anthony as a vital component of San Antonio’s past and future.

“Our main goal with this revitalization is to make the St. Anthony Hotel the community focal point that it once was and to do something meaningful that creates opportunity in our hometown,” says Raney. “We want this to be a place where San Antonians come to enjoy downtown and everything it has to offer.”

The Louis XV styled, gilt bronze mounted grand piano was completed in 1924 before being sent to Paris for decoration. Though much of its early past is unknown, the piano is rumored to have been made for the Russian Embassy in Paris, and purchased from the Russian Embassy in Washington D.C. by San Antonio railroad magnate and former St. Anthony owner Ralph W. Morrison in 1938.

About the St. Anthony Hotel

The St. Anthony Hotel is located at 300 East Travis Street at the intersection of Navarro Street in downtown San Antonio. The 10-story property offers 22 meeting rooms totaling more than 33,000 square feet and amenities include a full-service restaurant, two bar/lounge areas, 24-hour fitness center, business center and outdoor heated pool. Built in 1909, the property is set to undergo a significant renovation and will be re-branded as a Starwood Luxury Collection property.

About BC Lynd Hospitality

BC Lynd is a full-service national hospitality platform with integrated skill sets that combine expertise in management, investments and development. In developing a hospitality platform, BC Lynd integrates The Lynd Companies’ outstanding management infrastructure and proprietary technology systems with the extensive hospitality experience of BC Commercial Partners.

St. Anthony Hotel Seeks Stories and Photos from Past Visitors

Developer BC Lynd Hospitality aims to chronicle the hotel’s history as it launches a major renovation project

San Antonio, TX – March 7, 2013 – BC Lynd Hospitality, a growing hospitality investment and management firm, has announced an initiative to “rebuild the history” of the hotel by inviting former and current guests of the St. Anthony to share their photos and stories of past visits. This effort kicks off a revitalization and remodel project that aims to re-introduce the local landmark as a premier San Antonio hotel in 2014 by restoring it to its former stature while bringing it into the 21st century with luxury amenities and experience driven service.

“As we begin this significant remodeling project, we want to include the community as much as we can, and celebrating the St. Anthony’s history is a major part of that.”

Built in 1909, the St. Anthony was the city’s first luxury hotel and has a vibrant and glamorous history. It was the first fully air conditioned hotel and also pioneered many other industry standards including drive-up hotel registration, automatic opening doors and even private restrooms. The hotel has served an impressive clientele, hosting politicians, celebrities, rock stars, magnates and other dignitaries. In 1986, the St. Anthony was designated a National Historical landmark.

BC Lynd is providing former St. Anthony guests a chance to reminisce on the weddings, holidays, business gatherings and other events that have impacted the community since the hotel opened over 100 years ago.

“The St. Anthony has a historical and cultural significance that’s very important to the people of San Antonio,” says BC Lynd Hospitality CIO Clyde Johnson IV. “As we begin this significant remodeling project, we want to include the community as much as we can, and celebrating the St. Anthony’s history is a major part of that.”

Interested participants are encouraged to visit StAnthonyHistory.com and The St. Anthony Hotel Facebook page where they can tell stories, post photos, and share memories of their experiences at the landmark. Materials can also be mailed to the address below, dropped off in person or emailed to stories@stanthonyhistory.com. The hotel plans to archive the collected stories and photos and possibly use materials in its promotion of the re-launch.

Rebuild History Project
The St. Anthony Hotel
300 East Travis Street
San Antonio, TX 78205

About the St. Anthony Hotel

The St. Anthony Hotel is located at 300 East Travis Street at the intersection of Navarro Street in downtown San Antonio. The 10-story property offers 22 meeting rooms totaling more than 33,000 square feet and amenities include a full-service restaurant, two bar/lounge areas, 24-hour fitness center, business center and outdoor heated pool. Built in 1909, the property is set to undergo a significant renovation and will be re-branded as a Starwood Luxury Collection property.

About BC Lynd Hospitality

BC Lynd is a full-service national hospitality platform with integrated skill sets that combine expertise in management, investments and development. In developing a hospitality platform, BC Lynd integrates The Lynd Companies’ outstanding management infrastructure and proprietary technology systems with the extensive hospitality experience of BC Commercial Partners.