Vancouver’s next hotel, the Residence Inn by Marriott Portland-Vancouver, is slated to open Nov. 7. In the meantime, construction crews are finishing the final touches on its lobby, fitness room and indoor pool before the new-building smell fades.
The Residence Inn is at 411 S.E. 123rd Ave., off Mill Plain Boulevard east of Interstate 205. It jumps into a local market where the supply of hotel rooms appears to be growing faster than the demand.
Nevertheless, more rooms are coming: Hotel Indigo is under construction at The Waterfront Vancouver, AC Hotel by Marriott has broken ground across the street, and 11 more hotels in the county are in the proposal stage, according to Erica Thompson, spokeswoman for Visit Vancouver USA.
According to Thompson, the number of rented hotel rooms increased by 0.3 percent from September 2018 to September 2019. But in the same time period, average occupancy rates dropped from 78.1 percent to 72.7 percent. That’s partly due to the May opening of the Best Western Premier Hotel at Fisher’s Landing, which added 155 rooms to the market.
“We’re still selling more rooms than we were last year,” said Thompson.
The Residence Inn is the first hotel from Evergreen Hospitality, a Battle Ground company headed by Alkesh Patel, chairman and CEO. The group has plans for building and managing nine more hotels in Vancouver and Portland.
Evergreen’s next Vancouver project is the Hyatt Place at 412 Washington St., kitty-corner from the Hilton Vancouver Washington. It will break ground within two or three months, he said.
“Vancouver is growing,” he said. “We want to be here before the growth.”
The Residence Inn is an extended-stay, 87-room hotel. Rates start around about $200 per room per night and become cheaper the longer guests stay.
Patel said he anticipates the majority of customers will be business people looking to stay for more than five nights. The rest are comprised of people in between housing, and leisure travelers.
Residence Inn General Manager Christine Co-Santos said the new hotel will attract customers looking for a fresh hotel with extra amenities, including a hot breakfast buffet, a barbecue, a gas fire pit and rooms that feel more like an apartment than a hotel. Residence Inn also picks up groceries for guests, she said.
Co-Santos said its location also is desirable because of the short drive to Portland International Airport.
Residence Inn will employ about 25 people with additional seasonal hires during busier times of the year, she said.
Of the 87 rooms, 72 are studios and 15 are one-bedroom suites.
The new Residence Inn is considered the ninth generation of its kind from Marriott. A first-generation Residence Inn near theVancouver Mall was bought by Sonesta in 2017 and now operates as Sonesta ES Suites Portland-Vancouver.