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Sessions Hotel

Developer: Creative Boutique Hotels

Type of Development: Hospitality: Hotel; Restaurants; Spa

Owner: The Sessions Hotel LLC

Cty and State: Bristol, VA

Contact Person: Hal Craddock

Phone: 434.941.8595

Contact Email: [email protected]

Allocation Amount Requested: $9,500,000

Brief Description of Development:

Bristol, Virginia, more affectionately known as  The Birthplace of Country Music , is a progressive bright spot in the rapidly developing southwest corner of Virginia. This dynamic Virginia City and its twin sister, Bristol, TN share a common border that forms the traffic dividing line of State Street, Bristol s main commercial thoroughfare. These twin cities have considerable assets that are reinforcing the area s reputation as an exciting destination and a rising center for work, travel and leisure: the Bristol International Raceway, the new Birthplace of Country Music Museum (developed with the Smithsonian), its proximity to Interstates 81, 381, 77 and 40, and the now under construction, million square foot  The Falls  shopping, dining and entertainment complex, scheduled to open in spring of 2015 featuring Virginia s first Cabela s as well as the  Pinnacle  project, Tennessee s answer to  The Falls  project, featuring Bass Pro Shop.
Creative Boutique Hotels LLC (CBH), a Virginia-based hospitality development company was invited by both city governments to tour the joint downtowns and determine if there might be an opportunity for a destination type boutique hotel. We completed our market study and development analysis in the spring of 2013 which firmly reinforced that a 70 to 80 guest room boutique hotel could be a highly successful partner to the other development already underway in the Bristol area. In the fall of 2013, we began to look at potential historic renovations and adaptive-use buildings in both cities. After analyzing several buildings on both sides of the border, we settled on the ideal property for a successful hospitality development. The property includes the 1915 Owen s Equipment Building, the 1920 Jobbers Candy Factory and the 1922 Service Flour Mill. The complex is eligible for Virginia and Federal Historic and New Markets Tax Credits and is located in a Virginia Enterprise Zone.
We immediately saw the opportunity to join these three historic buildings with a new glass lobby creating a 70 guest room hotel, a two level restaurant operation (casual downstairs/upscale on the second floor) and an exciting roof top bar area which will look out on downtown Bristol. We have named the hospitality complex the  Sessions  for the historic beginnings of recorded country music that took place in Bristol, TN in 1927 when the RCA Victor Company recorded the Carter Family and Jimmie Rogers. The site fronts on the western end of State Street and several blocks from the already vibrant and revitalized east commercial development. The Sessions would extend this vibrancy and economic vitality to the terminus of State Street at Commonwealth Avenue/Volunteer Parkway, the gateway to both Bristol, VA and Bristol, TN.
The project was formerly kicked off by the City of Bristol, VA at a press conference on November 15, 2013 with the announcement of a no-net-loss tax abatement strategy to assist with offsetting the costs associated with the acquisition of the land and buildings. In addition the City applied for and was rewarded a TROF grant from the Virginia Tobacco Commission for $265,000, as the Commission has found the project to be consistent with their mission. The award was made based on the 75 full-time equivalent jobs and the substantial increase in taxable assets associated with the subject property that the Sessions will bring to Bristol, VA.
The Developer's available feasibility package lays out a clear and precise analysis of how this development will not only be a solid financial success for its investors and lenders, but will also provide a dynamic, downtown economic engine for the entire region. We look forward to interested investors joining our team and we would be happy to answer questions or supply additional information necessary for your evaluation of the development.

Total Project Cost: $20,626,555
Opening planned for 4th Quarter 2015
Capital Stack:

  • Federal Historic Tax Credits $ 3,446,830
  • State Historic Tax Credits $ 3,282,696
  • Developer Equity $ 965,000
  • Bristol Area Owners/Investors $ 2,432,029
  • Fundrise Owners/Investors $ 1,000,000
  • Debt Financing $ 9,500,000
  • Total $20,626,555

 Additional Sources Contributing to Debt Service:

  • City of Bristol   No Net Loss Note $ 1,200,000    
  • Tourism Development Agreement $ 4,125,311
  • (20% of total project cost paid back through taxes)

  Sessions competitive advantages:

  • Unlike the branded  cookie-cutter  hotels, Sessions Hotel will tell a  story  of the properties and of Bristol, of which our guests will become a part. Sessions will represent experiential travel at its finest.
  • There are no other boutique/luxury properties located in the area;
  • Authentic design will feature large guest rooms with uniquehistorical features;
  • Downtown area is growing, creating new and dynamic venues and events;
  • Additional lofts and apartments planned for the downtown community;
  • The Sessions Hotel will contribute guest rooms to the existing event venues in the downtown area making the downtown a destination for groups, conferences and city-side events;
  • Music venues offered at the property will make the complex a complementary destination for overnight guests, local dining and entertainment;
  • Spa will be a full-service facility catering to both hotel guests as well as the local community;
  • Guests will enjoy the opportunity to partake in the Downtown activities, restaurants and bars within walking distance to the hospitality complex;

But-For Statement:

We believe the project will have a reasonable chance of attracting conventional financing or  additional private investment without NMTC due to all of the other positive aspects of the project and capital stack; but, NMTC participation in the deal will undoubtedly make the financing process much easier and less time intensive.

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