That Spring Break mecca of the 1980s, is continuing its transformation into an upscale hotel destination, with the news that the Gale Boutique Hotel & Residences will open late here next year.
The Gale will keep company with the Conrad Fort Lauderdale Resort & Residences, scheduled to open later this year, and eventually the Four Seasons Hotel and Private Residences Fort Lauderdale, which is expected to break ground next year.
The project will feature a 96-room boutique hotel and 128 condo residences, whose rooms and suites will be appointed with sleek furnishings and luxury amenities. The hotel will also boast a rooftop sky deck, fitness center and spa, concierge services, 24-hour valet parking and pool.
Dev Motwani, president of Merrimac Ventures, a local real estate investment and development firm involved in the project, as well as the Conrad and Four Seasons’ projects, believes the Gale will play an important role in the continuing gentrification of Fort Lauderdale Beach. “My parents were pioneers in Fort Lauderdale Beach’s modern-day hotel landscape and our family is currently involved in a handful of projects up and down the beach,” said Motwani. “The Gale is probably the most unique of all these projects given that it will include a hotel and condo components with a price point and amenities that will appeal to locals.”
The hotel and adjacent condo complex will be located at 2900 Riomar Street, in an Art Deco building. “Even though the property is steps away from the beach, the area has retained a neighborhood feel over the years,” said Motwani. “We’re looking to complement that atmosphere with street-level retail and nightlife options that welcome the public.”
Motwani, who was raised just blocks from the Gale site, has seen Fort Lauderdale Beach’s transformation first hand. “I’ve watched Fort Lauderdale Beach come full circle – from a Spring Break hotspot, to an overlooked gem following the demise of Spring Break and during the recession, and now a target for some of the biggest names in real estate and hospitality,” he said. “We expect to see the flood of investment into Fort Lauderdale continue as developers – and their buyers – look for investment opportunities beyond Miami Beach, downtown Miami and Sunny Isles.”
Other partners in the project include Newgard Development Group, which specializes in large-scale residential and commercial projects; and Menin Hospitality, a hotel operator whose projects include the Gale South Beach, Sanctuary South Beach, The Bentley South Beach and the Raffaello Hotel in Chicago.