Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Oklahoma City-Based HotelBrokerOne Launches Hotel Management Arm

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Oklahoma City-Based HotelBrokerOne Launches Hotel Management Arm

Article excerpt

HotelBrokerOne has launched HospitalityOne, a new company focused on reviving and managing hotels and motels destined for sale.

"You almost have a SWAT team to take over a property, being able to take over an asset, get it stabilized and get proper management in place to then help that asset become more marketable," said Mike Craddock, the Tulsa vice president with Oklahoma City-based HotelBrokerOne.

Craddock scored the first HospitalityOne client with the Fort Scott Inn, a 77-unit former Best Western in Fort Scott, Kan.

"We obtained the assignment to list it and subsequently were able to get the assignment to manage the property," said Craddock, who started making regular trips to the hotel in June. "The institution needed help from a management standpoint. It made sense for them because it gave them one man to contact who was responsible for both the management and the listing."

That synergy proves effective for both the client and HotelBrokerOne.

"It kind of goes hand in hand," said Craddock. "You understand the property from managing it and then you understand how to list it."

This hotel's problems read like many others acquired through the go-go days of the last decade.

"It was purchased at the peak of the market, so there was probably too high of a debt level to service," said Craddock. "When the market softened it just could not keep up with all the debt servicing."

The former owners also failed to provide adequate property management, he said.

By the time the lender took back the hotel, the former owners had already announced its pending closure. Craddock had to overcome that bad word-of-mouth as well as the backlogged maintenance and repair needs.

"The hotel was from a management standpoint was very dirty," he said. "The roof needed to be replaced, which the bank has subsequently done. …

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