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Halted AEG sale will do little to slow DTLA development

March 14, 2013|By Alejandro Lazo
  • A $200-million hotel will be built in downtown Los Angeles next to the Residence Inn and Courtyard by Marriott, another high-rise hotel already under construction.
A $200-million hotel will be built in downtown Los Angeles next to the Residence… (Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles…)

AEG helped spark a downtown Los Angeles renaissance with its bold bet on the once-beaten-down no-go zone.

Today a halted sale of the company—and its marquee sports  and entertainment holdings which include Staples Center, LA Live and the Los Angeles Kings—will probably do little to stop the development march, said consultant Alan Reay of Atlas Hospitality.

Even hiccups in efforts to reel in a professional football team—and build a stadium downtown—would do little to stop the neighborhood’s upswing, Reay said.

AEG: A look back

“There is a tremendous buyers' demand for land in downtown L.A., and there is definitely a lot of developers who want to get into that market,” Reay said. “It’s definitely going to continue, you would only have a few people pausing.”

When the glass-sheathed tower that was the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels opened three years ago, the complex entered one of the worst economic slumps in modern history. California hotel foreclosures had quadrupled over the prior year, and travelers and other vacationers had cut back on their spending.

Photo gallery: AEG properties in Southern California

Now downtown Los Angeles is in the midst of a scramble by developers. Plans are in the works for another high-rise hotel near Staples Center. And three large hotel projects are already underway and developers are prospecting for other potential sites in the neighborhood, Times staff writer Roger Vincent reported recently.

A Marriot Renaissance Hotel, more than 20 stories tall and 450 rooms, is set to open in 2016 across from LA Live. That will rise next to a Courtyard by Marriott and a Residence Inn by Marriott, being built under one roof and slated to open in summer 2014.

Just to stay competitive with other cities in attracting conventions, Los Angeles could use an additional 2,000 to 3,000 hotel rooms, hospitality consultant Bruce Baltin of PKF Consulting, recently told The Times’ Vincent.

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