Recently, an 11-story downtown Wilmington office building finished its conversion to become the area’s newest hotel. Driftwood Capital, a vertically integrated commercial real estate investment, development and lending platform specializing in hospitality, had previously disclosed its intended project after acquiring 1220 N. Market St. in March 2019, but announced it was finally beginning the conversion in May.  

The newest hotel, a Staybridge Suites, now sits within a few blocks of Wilmington’s major courthouses, local dining options and downtown attractions.  The hotel, featuring 134 suite-style rooms with a contemporary look and feel, is now officially open to the public! It includes a lobby lounge, fitness center, sundries shop and a business center with meeting space. 

Driftwood Capital said it was drawn to the project in part by Wilmington’s hub of corporate and legal filings, which could help sustain a healthy clientele for the Market Street corridor hotel that sits within a block of Delaware’s federal bankruptcy and district courts, and within a few blocks of the Leonard L. Williams Justice Center where New Castle County’s vaunted Court of Chancery is located. 

“As the corporate capital of America, Wilmington has built-in demand for quality, convenient accommodations to serve corporate travelers as well as the increased number of leisure travelers visiting the area,” said Carlos Rodriguez Sr., CEO of Driftwood Capital, in a statement. “Driftwood identified a void in the hospitality market, with little new hotel development in the city over the past twenty years and is excited to deliver a new extended stay option to travelers in the heart of Downtown Wilmington.”  

Driftwood Capital sought the office building, in part, due to its location in a designated Opportunity Zone, a federal program that offers significant tax savings if held for a considerable amount of time. Driftwood Capital primarily raised its private funding through a Qualified Opportunity Fund associated with the project, which allows investors to defer paying capital gains rolled into the fund for up to nine years, with tax on capital gains eliminated altogether if the investment is held for at least 10 years. 

The Staybridge Suites hotel will join a downtown hospitality market that already features five name-brand hotels: the Hotel du Pont, Doubletree by Hilton, Sheraton Suites, Residence Inn by Marriott, and Courtyard by Marriott. Notably, Buccini/Pollin Group is also currently building a luxury boutique hotel off Market Street about three blocks to the south of the Staybridge Suites. 

So much is happening in downtown Wilmington and there is so much more to come. So, be sure to check in soon for your next #VisitWilm adventure.  

Want to learn more about this hotel? Click through to the Delaware Business Times article.