With 25 different projects currently in the pipeline, downtown and suburban Cleveland is a hotbed of hotel development. Eight properties are under construction, 12 will begin construction within the coming year and five more are in early planning stages, according to Lodging Econometrics. If they all come to fruition, by 2017 the Greater Cleveland market will gain 3,452 available guest rooms— a 15 percent increase.

A 28-story, 600-room Hilton connected to the Cleveland Convention Center and the new Global Center for Health Innovation is projected to open in in the downtown district in spring 2016. Kimpton, Drury Hotels and Le Méridien also have downtown properties under development.

The growth has been going on for some time. Over the past two years the city has seen the opening of two new downtown properties—a 135-guest room Aloft Hotel and the 156-guest room The 9 at the Metropolitan, an Autograph Collection property. In addition, a former Crowne Plaza with 484 guest rooms was renovated and rebranded as The Westin Cleveland.

As hotelmanagement.net reports, the resurgence of interest in Cleveland’s downtown district is a result of the new Cleveland Convention Center, which features  225,000 sq. ft. of exhibit space, 35 state-of-the-art meeting rooms and a 32,000-square-foot, column-free ballroom with spectacular views of the lakefront.

David Sangree, president of Hotel & Leisure Advisors, an Ohio-based consulting firm, told hotelmanagement.net, “Much of the activity downtown is due to the new convention center. When you add a convention center to a market that didn’t have an effective one for years, it creates high expectations for new groups and conventions coming to the city.”

In the Spotlight

Cleveland was chosen to host the 2016 Republican National Convention, a move that officials hope will thrust the city into the national limelight and highlight it as a choice destination for large scale meetings.

“From a hotel point of view the convention will be a one-time thing, but assuming it all goes well, it’s also a tremendous opportunity to build the reputation of Cleveland as a destination,” Sangree told hotelmanagement.net.

Destination Cleveland reports that year-to-date hotel room occupancy through May 2015 was 59.2 percent, up from 56.3 percent in 2014. The average daily rate rose 4.8 percent to $99.49, and revenue per available room increased 10.2 percent.

Suburban Development

A flurry of development is also occurring in Cleveland’s western suburbs. Two hotels have opened in the past two years, and four more are in the pipeline. A 267-room DoubleTree by Hilton opened last month in Westlake, following a multimillion-dollar renovation and conversion of a Holiday Inn.

According to Sangree, there is “pent-up demand for new product” in the western suburbs because the past decade has seen no new supply in the region.