Hotel John Marshall Renovation Takes Homes Prestigious Award

April 17, 2012

A downtown Richmond landmark and historic renovation project transformed from a hotel into high-rise apartments took the top prize Tuesday night as the Project of the Year for 2011 during the annual GRACRE awards. The Greater Richmond Association for Commercial Real Estate (GRACRE) recognized the Residences at the John Marshall (formerly the Hotel John Marshall) along with 15 other local commercial real estate projects during its 11th awards ceremony at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. More than 200 real estate professionals attended the event.

The 16 winners came from a group of 41 finalists, consisting of 34 projects and seven transactions. Finalists ranged from a wine-tasting room in Louisa to a restaurant in Rocketts Landing and a dermatology office in the West End. “The breadth of quality and innovation found in this year’s project submissions was outstanding,” said Doug Atkins, president of GRACRE. “The commercial real estate industry had a good year in 2011, and GRACRE is privileged to be able to recognize these projects that have impacted our area’s real estate sector.”

The historic renovation project on North Fifth St., one of Richmond’s most venerable landmarks, was years in the making. The 16-story hotel, which first opened in 1929, closed for good in 2004. After that, several plans were floated to renovate the building. However, rehabilitation didn’t begin until 2010, after Raleigh-based Dominion Realty Partners put together a deal that included federal and state historic tax credits and $40 million in financing from the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The first residents moved into the historic renovation project’s 238 apartments last December. The $70 million, mixed-use project also included ground floor retail and renovation of the hotel’s stately ballrooms — a favorite location for Richmond’s social and political events.

In addition to the Project of the Year, the other GRACRE real estate award winners are:
• St. Joseph’s Villa, site infrastructure improvements
• The MillWorks at the Green
• Affiliated Dermatologists of Virginia
• Bon Secours St. Francis Watkins Centre
• Cooper Vineyards, tasting room
• Harvester Building
• The Hodges Partnership, building addition
• Prince George County Library, Appomattox Regional Library System
• Queally Hall, Robins School of Business, University of Richmond
• Southland Wine Company Lofts
• The Tommy J. West Club at the Siegel Center, Virginia Commonwealth University
• Honorable Mention (lease): Dick’s Sporting Goods & Hobby Lobby at Hancock Village
• Honorable Mention (sale/acquisition): Byrd Center Business Park
• Deal of the Year (lease): Capital One at Liberty Plaza II
• Deal of the Year (sale/acquisition): Lingerfelt Development Acquisition of Liberty Property Trust Innsbrook Portfolio


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