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Amerland Group Considering Purchase of Rosslyn Hotel

By Eric Richardson
Published: Wednesday, July 15, 2009, at 12:03PM
Rosslyn Hotel Signs Lit Dave Bullock [Flickr]

The twin towers of the Rosslyn Hotel with neon lit for filming in 2007. Affordable housing provider The Amerland Group, which owns the Rosslyn Lofts (right), is in escrow to purchase the Hotel Rosslyn (left).

Affordable housing provider The Amerland Group has signed a contract to purchase the Rosslyn Hotel at 5th and Main. The company owns the Rosslyn Lofts, the hotel's sister building located across 5th street, and the Alexandria at 5th and Spring.

Jules Arthur, Amerland's COO, says that his company is "evaluating what is the best use for the building," and that the firm will engage the community on best uses for the building before making a final decision on the purchase.

The building, located at 112 W. 5th street, has long been listed for sale. This Spring it was in escrow to be sold to Common Ground, a New York-based affordable housing provider.

Common Ground proposed a tenant mix for the building that targeted 50% of the units toward chronically homeless individuals with substance abuse and mental health issues, a move that upset many in the community.

An Amerland purchase would reunite the two halves of the Rosslyn Hotel. The northern half, now the Rosslyn Lofts, opened in 1912. The southern annex was opened in 1923, and a tunnel under 5th street connected the two.

Arthur could not give an exact purchase price for the structure, but said that it would be greater than $10 million. He said that his firm is still considering funding sources. "We've got lots and lots of pieces, and we have no idea how to put them together yet," said Arthur.

The Rosslyn Hotel is currently owned by 111 Zuma Corporation, run by Rob Frontiera. Frontiera had converted the upper floors of the Rosslyn Lofts to residential before selling that building to Amerland in 2007.

This month, Amerland began renting the lower floors as small affordable units, as Arthur said that he would imagine a similar renovation for the hotel.

San Diego-based Amerland entered the Downtown market in 2006 when it purchased the 463-unit Alexandria for $30 million. In 2007, tenants of the building filed a lawsuit alleging mistreatment by Amerland. That suit was settled earlier this year, with Amerland and the Community Redevelopment agency agreeing to pay $1 million for housing and compensation.

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