HDSi leads a major new convention hotel design; January 7, 2021
Skorman Construction preps land near SeaWorld for dense hotel and retail development
Skorman bought the property in 2017 as part of a larger 11-acre assemblage that included an adjacent 4.5-acre site — now a 259-room Tru by Hilton hotel developed by Miami-based Epelboim Development Group and completed in September. Noel Epelboim, president and CEO of Epelboim Development Group, told GrowthSpotter he had been working closely with the development team to clear an access easement through the middle of the parcels and add some cross access easement between the three lots.
The proposed DP for the project next door shows a hotel, up to 35 stories tall, with 1,000 hotel rooms and a multilevel parking garage along I-4. Additionally, plans include up to 4,900 square feet of retail space across two separate pads and two restaurant locations: one large with the capacity for 420 seats and a smaller restaurant with 180 seats.
Kimley-Horn & Associates is the civil engineer and Atlanta-based Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart & Associates, Inc. is the architect. HDSi’s associated landscape architectural team of Libra Design Group is providing landscape design and hardscape.
The property falls within the I-Drive District overlay area, meaning the developer must adhere to specific standards that were adopted in 2017 as a means to spur more urbanized and pedestrian-friendly developments.
Paul Sexton, vice president of HREC Investment Advisors, said he’s seeing a transition of new hotel development moving to areas where Skorman’s properties are located — just outside of the core center of Orlando’s tourism corridor, but close enough to its giant theme parks and the Orange County Convention Center.
He adds hotel brands like Marriott and Hilton are seldom built in the core because of a lack of land. Hotel brands are looking for space to build, and proximity to other hotel brands because that’s what guests like to see, he said.