City of Brookfield chooses hotel operator

North Central Group will operate hotel connected to conference center at Brookfield Square Mall

The Vanity store at Brookfield Square will close.

Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 04:55 pm

The city of Brookfield has chosen Middleton-based North Central Group to own and operate its 170-room hotel, which will be located adjacent to Brookfield Square Mall.

The city has been in discussions with Chattanooga, Tennessee-based CBL & Associates Properties Inc., the owner of Brookfield Square, since at least the spring to purchase 9.5 acres of land previously owned by Sears in the mall parking lot to redevelop into a conference center and adjoining five-story hotel.

Dan Ertl, Brookfield’s community development director, said the city will likely close on the land in 2018 and then sell 2.5 acres to North Central Group, which will own and manage the hotel. Ertl would not say what the hotel flag will be.

The city will own the remaining 7 acres of land and the conference center building, but lease it to North Central Group, which will manage it.

The company was chosen after responding to a request for proposal in March from the city.

“The specifics of their proposal intrigued us and quite frankly their terms also intrigued us,” Ertl said.

The Brookfield City Council will review the terms of the land sale and North Central’s proposal on Tuesday.

North Central Group owns and operates more than 25 hotels under multiple franchise brands, specializing in premium select service hotels within the Hilton and Marriott family, according to the company’s website.

In Wisconsin, North Central operates 13 hotels, including the Hampton Inn at 575 N. Barker Road.

Brookfield Square plans shown at CARW/ICSC conference.

Andy Inman, vice president of development for North Central, said the company is planning to break ground in mid-2018 for a mid-2019 opening.

“We are planning an upscale business-class hotel,” Inman said, adding that they are close to announcing the brand.

Meanwhile, Milwaukee-based Marcus Corp. has announced plans to open a second BistroPlex concept in a 40,000-square-foot building that will be attached to the Sears store.

Construction on the new theater is expected to begin in 2018.

The Sears store will eventually be converted into an entertainment center space, although representatives with CBL will not elaborate on their plans.

The city’s hotel joins at least three other hotel proposals in the works in Brookfield. Last month, Burlington, Iowa-based Hawkeye Hotels purchased 5 acres of land in The Corridor development along I-94 in Brookfield. Hawkeye plans to break ground on a 137-room Holiday Inn Express & Suites and a 132-room Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott by the end of the year.

Kinseth Hospitality Co. of North Liberty, Iowa is planning to convert the Goerkes Park Business Center office building in the Town of Brookfield into an 82-room Tru by Hilton hotel.

Inman isn’t worried about the competition, saying what North Central Group is proposing will target a different market segment than other hotels in the area.

“Our hotel will be geared more toward the business traveler and conference center business,” Inman said. “We’re looking forward to moving forward and excited to be working with the city.”

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