BOSTON – Electra America Hospitality Group announced that it has acquired the 225-room Loews Boston Hotel, an upper upscale hotel in the heart of the Back Bay neighborhood of Boston.
The property will be converted upon acquisition into “Hotel AKA Back Bay,” marking hospitality leader AKA’s debut in Boston.
This is EAHG’s sixth hotel acquisition over the last 18 months. In addition to Boston, AKA made its entrance in Miami and West Palm Beach and expanded its footprint in the Manhattan and Washington D.C. markets. AKA operates 15 luxury hotels and hotel residences in Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, South Florida and London.
“This was an excellent opportunity to acquire a well-maintained, upper upscale hotel in the capital of New England, where several prestigious academic institutions, iconic cultural destinations, and the nation’s largest life science/biotech cluster are generating strong demand,” says Russ Urban, CEO of EAHG. “While Boston’s hotel recovery has trailed some markets, it’s poised for a strong rebound once business and group travel returns in earnest.”
“As we continue our ambitious yet thoughtful growth strategy, we remain dedicated in our commitment to developing the AKA brand in the country’s most culturally significant destinations,” says Larry Korman, CEO of AKA. “Boston has long been a city of interest and we are delighted to introduce the bespoke AKA experience to Boston’s discerning visitors. Rich with history, bustling with business and educational institutions, as well as architecture and design reminiscent of an English city, Boston is a gateway into New England for the brand.”
Built in 1925 and located at 154 Berkeley Street, the historic, 73,350 square-foot stone and masonry building served as the headquarters of The Boston Police Department from 1926 through 1990. Hotel AKA Back Bay offers unparalleled access to a myriad of Boston’s cultural attractions, walking distance to Boston Commons, Boston Public Library and Copley Square. Young professionals and families with ties to Boston’s more than 40 colleges and universities will pose as a key guest segment for the hotel. Hotel AKA Back Bay is near Berklee College of Music, Boston College, Boston University, Emerson, Harvard, MIT, Northeastern University, and Tufts Medical School. The new hotel will also attract many business travelers visiting the city’s technology, start-up and life sciences companies, key industries that have grown in Boston due to its plethora of higher education institutions and their talents.
Roughly $20 million is being invested in design upgrades and renovations, which will be undertaken while the hotel is open. The 222 guestrooms, two suites and one expansive, one-of-a-kind penthouse suite will undergo a soft design update. The hotel’s lobby will feature a library with an intimate seating area to enjoy morning coffee, afternoon tea and evening cocktails amongst live music. Renovations to the public spaces include updates to the restaurant and bar, Precinct Kitchen+Bar, serving classic American dishes and New England seafood. Precinct Kitchen+Bar will be home to a whiskey cellar and wine tasting room for guests and events. A new private dining room with a spiral staircase as a focal point will become the go-to spot for meetings and celebrations in Back Bay. Additional enhancements under renovation include a large, second floor fitness center; tranquil spa; theater; and a newly reimagined rooftop.