Downtown Dayton hotels: Ardent, Arcade, Wayne church sites could open in 2024-25

mdunnDayton Daily News

May 8, 2024 –

Downtown Dayton has two hotels today, offering about 230 hotel rooms, and local tourism and business leaders say it needs far more than that.

They could soon get their wish. Multiple boutique hotel projects are making progress, including the long-delayed Hotel Ardent, and could more than double the amount of hotel product downtown.

There’s also work underway to create a glitzy new headquarters hotel near the Dayton Convention Center that also would expand the supply of hotel rooms and places to stay.

“Multiple hotels (are) necessary downtown to support our business community and put Dayton in a competitive position to attract regional meetings and events that drive economic growth,” said Pam Plageman, executive director and CEO of the Montgomery County Convention Facilities Authority.

Downtown currently has two hotels in operation: The Fairfield Inn & Suites and the AC Hotel by Marriott Dayton, both of which are located near Day Air Ballpark, where the Dayton Dragons play baseball.

The 98-room Fairfield Inn, which opened in 2018, was the first newly constructed hotel in downtown Dayton in decades. The AC Hotel, which opened in early 2023, has 134 rooms.

These hotels were sorely needed and are in very high demand according to some downtown leaders and stakeholders, especially since the Radisson Hotel at 33 E. Fifth St., formerly the Crowne Plaza Dayton, shut down in late 2022.

Three hotel projects are in the works that would create more than 290 new hotel rooms, and a proposed hotel near the Dayton Convention Center could have more than 200 new rooms. Two hotels are expected to open later this year.

Hotel Ardent

A boutique hotel called the Hotel Ardent is under construction at 137 N. Main St., which is across from the Victoria Theatre.

The Hotel Ardent, part of the Tapestry Collection by Hilton, originally was expected to open late in 2022.

But COVID-related issues resulted in major delays, said Stephen Schwartz, chairman of First Hospitality, the Chicago-based developer.

“Our general contractor — put it this way — he didn’t survive COVID,” Schwartz said. “And that put us in a tough position.”

Schwartz said a new contractor was hired to finish the work, but the project ran into various obstacles. For instance, he said, it took a long time to get digital switchgears, roofing materials and a generator.

Construction also was slowed down because unanticipated problems arose with the renovation of the historic building, which was constructed in 1927, Schwartz said. “We encountered a few difficulties but we’re intrepid and we’re moving on,” he said, adding that the hotel hopefully will open in the early third quarter of this year. “We’re part of the urban renaissance in Dayton.”

The Hotel Ardent, which likely will cost more than $30 million when finished, is 10 stories tall and will have a Tuscan steak restaurant called Bistecca on the ground floor.

The hotel’s decor and theme pays homage to the innovation, creativity and ingenuity of the Dayton region, Schwartz said.

Arcade hotel, headquarters hotel

The northern section of the Dayton Arcade is being turned into a new, 93-room Hilton Garden Inn hotel.

The developers are spending about $41 million to create the hotel and a new retail marketplace in a couple of the northernmost buildings of the Arcade, which consists of nine interconnected buildings.

Full construction on the hotel and a second floor restaurant, called the Garden Grille and Bar, began in late 2022, said Megan Dunn Peters, marketing and community partnerships manager for the Dayton Arcade.

She said the project should be complete near the end of this year.

The city of Dayton and Montgomery County each recently approved giving $1.5 million to support efforts to bring a new $60 million to $80 million hotel to a downtown property across from the Dayton Convention Center.

The proposed project site is a city-owned, 0.4-acre public plaza on South Jefferson Street, south of East Fifth Street, next to the massive Oregon District parking garage.

Montgomery County Convention Facilities Authority leadership and their consultants say a new hotel could be built at the site that could be a dozen stories or taller and could have 200 hotel rooms.

Supporters say the convention center needs a full-service, nationally branded hotel in its immediate vicinity, and that the closure of the former Radisson hotel left that part of downtown with a dearth of hotel options.

The Radisson is connected to the convention center via a skywalk.

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