Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Renovation under Way on Howard Johnson Site

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Renovation under Way on Howard Johnson Site

Article excerpt

l Record Staff Reporter A $550,000 renovation project is in progress as developers work to revive the former Howard Johnson motor lodge and restaurant, Int. Hwy. 35 and W. Main St. in Norman. Ardmore hotelier Marvin Polzien, owner of Best Western franchises in Ardmore and Longview, Texas, purchased the vacant hotel in March, with plans to redevelop the 110-room property. The purchase price was not disclosed. Polzien said he hopes to operate the hotel, renamed the Norman Inn, under the banner of a national chain. No agreement has been reached, he said. Best Foods Co. Ltd. of Norman, a partnership led by John W. Marley, has begun restaurant renovations estimated at $250,000. Marley, whose J.W. Marley Co. is general contractor for all of the construction work at the hotel and restaurant, said the Best Foods partnership had applied for a national restaurant franchise. He declined to identify the chain prior to franchise approval, which is expected as early as this week. Polzien said the hotel will begin renting rooms Sunday. "We will open for the national Baptist convention," Polzien said. "We are not promoting, obviously, because the renovation work in the lobby and restaurant are far from complete. We are just opening because people need a place to stay." He said he will open 68 rooms; the rest require too much work to be ready in time for the convention. He said 20 rooms at his Ardmore hotel have been reserved for the convention, which is expected to bring some 30,000 people to Oklahoma City next week. "Over time, we will go through all the rooms, but actually, most of the furnishings, wall coverings and other things are in surprisingly good shape," Polzien said. …
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