Housing Complex

Pay $411 Per Night to Stay in the WCP Newsroom!

Could be a luxury hotel yet! (Lydia DePillis)

Well, not quite. But after a proposed tax abatement for a luxury hotel on our little corner of Adams Morgan passed the Council's finance committee yesterday, you still might be able to pay that much to stay here a few years down the road.

Last week, it looked like the $61 million tax abatement that Councilmember Jim Graham was proposing for an outpost of Ian Schrager's international hotel chain was dead. But the committee amended the proposal to cap the value of the abatement at $46 million, and it passed with an amendment from Councilmember Kwame Brown to require the hiring of District residents and contractors. It even got support from Councilmember Michael Brown, no great friend of the wealthy, who called it a "great economic development project." Which means developer Brian Friedman might actually be able to pull this off, renovating the First Church of Christ, Scientist and demolishing our offices at 2390 Champlain. We'll know more after today; it's the last item on the Council's legislative agenda today.

And now, thanks to Michael Neibauer's document-digging skillz, we know a little more about what the project would look like. According to a report on the team's request for tax increment financing back in July, the new Edition hotel would start out at an average per-night rental rate of $411, which would rise to $511 in four years. It would consider as its main competition the Ritz and the Four Seasons, and have no fewer than five bars, a cafe, and a restaurant.

Which would lend a whole new cast to the mantra, "We don't want to be another Adams Morgan."

  • John

    While I was skeptical at first, I Have to say this seems like a really interesting project. Could really liven up that section of Adams Morgan. But does the fact that this abatement passed really mean that ground will be breaking anytime soon? Are there any renderings for the hotel yet?

  • awful

    Seems like a great project... for the suburbs. I feel horrible for the neighbors. And you fools thought you were living next to a Church!

  • Devoe

    It will be interesting to see how people paying $411 a night navigate the corner of 17th and Euclid on their way back from U Street without losing their wallet. Although I suppose the answer to that could be "in a cab."

  • John

    @ awful- Are we reading the same post? Or are you being sarcastic? Not sure how a decidedly urban boutique hotel would be better off in the burbs. Also not sure who would pay 411 dollars a night to stay in the burbs. Also not sure which residents would rather have a gated church for a neighbor than a nice hotel. It's not like the church was accessible or serving the community as a soup kitchen/ Shelter or anything.

  • Rick Mangus

    Who cares about what Jim Graham aka. (The Queen of All Media, she's mad because she hasn't been payed-off, it's the Potomac Shakedown, right out of Mo Barry's play book!

  • Skipper

    Council booted the bill off the agenda b/c it failed to comply with Council filing rules b/c yesterday's re-markup on the bill occurred too late for a full Council vote today.

    Graham and Evans tried to sneak it in; Mendelson called them on it and was vindicated.

  • Anonymous, Too

    But, Skipper, doesn't that just mean it will come back up at the next session, or is it dead for now? I must say, Evans has the biggest set of cojones in the DC Metropolitan Area...

    Why is Evans even taking about tax breaks for an "Ian Schrager/Marriott partnership," let alone resurrecting and voting on it???? Yeah, that Marriott--a major client of Jack's part-time bosses at Patton-Boggs.

    From the Washington Business Journal:

    "We're bringing this thing back from the dead," Evans told the Journal.

    The committee on Monday amended the bill to cap the tax abatement to $46 million over 20 years. The planned $127.1 million Edition DC — part of the Ian Schrager/Marriott partnership of boutique hotels — would consume the historic First Church of Christ, Scientist building.


  • Mayflower

    @ Anonymous, Too aka DAVE MALOFF:

    Let me guess. You are also UP IN ARMS over all the cuts to the "social safety net" and all the folks that have been raking in the welfare for 10+ years.

    Well, getting a property like this back on the tax rolls will generate $$$ to fund all of the programs you have your panties in a bunch about losing.

    Which way do you want it?

    Evans can't move these projects on his own either - it takes the full committee then the full Council to pass it. Civics 101.

    Wait! I hear someone enjoy a steak dinner in a neighborhood. I'm off to close em down!

  • Esteban G.

    Let's get this property back on the tax rolls! But first, let's give them tax abatements!

  • Tex

    This hotel would bring much needed daytime activity, jobs and community public areas to Adams Morgan. The Church itself is in desperate need of restoration and its congregants strongly support the project. Once developed, this will be the most unique hotel in Washington, and it can only be built with a tax abatement -- and note that the sales and occupancy taxes generated by the hotel will not be abated.