COVINGTON, Ky.--()--Aparium Hotel Group announced today a partnership with the Salyers Group and the City of Covington to develop and manage The Hotel Covington. The project represents the first development and management contract of the newly formed company by hotel veterans Kevin Robinson, Mario Tricoci and Tim Dixon.
“Given their collective experience in developing and managing truly authentic properties, the partners of Aparium Hotel Group were our first and only choice for this partnership”
The project represents the transformation of a celebrated, century-old downtown Covington building into a modern luxury hotel. As the first of its genre in the market, The Hotel Covington will appeal to business and leisure travelers accustomed to upscale hotels in primary markets seeking an authentic and locally influenced experience. “This property ideally suits our commitment to delivering Translocal Hospitality in urban markets,” said Mario Tricoci, CEO of Aparium Hotel Group. “The Hotel Covington will draw inspiration from the local culture and cultivate a following through a sense of civic pride and exciting food & beverage.”
Headquartered in Covington, The Salyers Group is a diversified investment company, which owns more than $12M in local real estate holdings. Owned by the Salyers Family, with a rich history of investing in the Covington market, the company’s portfolio includes Donna Salyers’ Fabulous-Furs, a leading faux fur designer and manufacturer nationally recognized for its designs and products. The company also owns The Madison Event Center, one of Greater Cincinnati’s most popular banquet and reception venues, attracting over 100,000 visitors and hundreds of weddings and corporate events annually.
“The Madison Event Center represents a major traffic driver to hotels throughout Greater Cincinnati, but we believe that a destination hotel capturing a true Northern Kentucky experience is needed,” said Guy van Rooyen, president of The Salyers Group. “Given their collective experience in developing and managing truly authentic properties, the partners of Aparium Hotel Group were our first and only choice for this partnership,” added van Rooyen. “We are fortunate to also have a progressive city government that shares our vision and is helping us transform an historic downtown building into a modern luxury hotel and a major food & beverage operation.”
The City of Covington, under the leadership of Mayor Chuck Scheper, will invest the 102-year-old former Coppin’s Department Store building, now home to City Hall and state offices, to the project. By reimagining the historically designated building into an approximately 107-room hotel, this significant project is certain to become the springboard for development in Covington’s downtown business district.
Springboard for development
The $25M project is expected to create approximately 125 jobs and foster economic development along Madison Avenue, a wedding district already established in downtown Covington. Because of the promise of this ripple effect, The Hotel Covington represents the first project of the Catalytic Development Funding Corp. of Northern Kentucky, a private sector, not-for-profit organization providing financing assistance and related services for developers of quality residential and commercial real estate projects in Northern Kentucky’s urban cities.
In the coming months, the ownership group will pursue financial incentives to supplement conventional financing including Federal and State Historic Tax credits, economic development and tourism tax credits and other financial incentives. “These enhancements are designed to help developers bring transformational projects to communities,” said Tim Dixon, a partner of Aparium Hotel Group and the CEO of its development partner, Fe Equus. “Covington is at the cusp of redevelopment but needs a major infusion of traffic and commerce which a hotel and high-caliber restaurant and bar can deliver if done right.” Dixon, who owns and developed The Iron Horse Hotel, an award-winning 100-room property in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, said at a news conference today at Covington City Hall that the property closely parallels the opportunity to create a destination hotel in the city.
“We are keenly focused on the importance of genuine service and authentic experiences,” said Tricoci. “The Hotel Covington is destined to be a place where friends gather and travelers find a sophisticated but approachable property - a truly Translocal environment.”
Aparium Hotel Group is a leading hotel company founded and controlled by experienced professionals in hotel development, management and marketing who came together with one seminal belief - that great hotels are a destination sought out by travelers and a favorite place for locals. A philosophy Aparium calls Translocal Hospitality.
The company is committed to and engaged in a partnership of vision with independent hotel owners who know their communities intimately, and their properties are a source of pride. By fostering collaboration, Aparium delivers measurable, sustainable return on investment through transparency and accountability at all stages of operation. Under its Intuitive Service Model, Aparium believes every employee is empowered to create remarkable moments for each guest. This proven approach not only increases efficiencies, but also dramatically improves the guest experience through anticipatory service.
The Iron Horse Hotel in downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin was voted BLLA’s Boutique Hotel of the Year in 2010 and 2011; earned AAA’s Four Diamond Award the last 3 years; ranked on Conde Nast Traveler Magazine’s 2011 and 2012 Gold List of the top hotels in the world and has been the #1 hotel in Wisconsin on TripAdvisor since 2009.
The Elysian Hotel Chicago (today known as the Waldorf Astoria Chicago) was developed and managed by Aparium partners Mario Tricoci and Kevin Robinson. The hotel was voted #1 US hotel by both Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler magazines; #1 US hotel according to US News and World Report; recipient of AAA’s Five Diamond Award in each year of eligibility; #1 hotel in the US according to TripAdvisor following 2 consecutive years as #1 hotel in Chicago.