Developers trying to revive St. Paul Square add Staybridge Suites hotel to holdings

A group aiming to transform St. Paul Square east of downtown into a buzzing nightlife district has purchased more property in the historic neighborhood.

Local developer David Adelman and Michael Jersin and Don Thomas of commercial real estate firm CBRE are the primary landowners in the area, having acquired an assortment of buildings and parking lots from Zachry Corp. and the city of San Antonio since 2017.

They are trying to revive the square — bounded by Center and Montana streets, Interstate 37 and the railroad tracks — by filling buildings with bars, restaurants and office tenants to draw visitors and workers.

Last year they turned the Sunset Station rail depot into an entertainment venue with a nightclub. Dubbed The Espee, the area will include an amphitheater, multipurpose outdoor space and indoor space for events.

The Staybridge Suites at St. Pauls Square in San Antonio, Texas, as seen on Feb. 8, 2022. The group attempting to turn St. Paul Square into a nightlife destination has purchased the 11-story Staybridge Suites with plans to renovate the hotel.

Josie Norris / San Antonio Express News

Now they’re incorporating the Staybridge Suites hotel into their plan.

The partners, along with local hotelier Charles Leddy, bought the 11-story hotel at 123 Hoefgen Ave. and a nearby 1.3-acre parking lot last month from a company linked to Zachry.

The purchase price was for the 138-room hotel and parking lot was unclear, but the Bexar Appraisal District values ​​them at a combined $10.9 million. Leddy’s company, Presidian Hotels & Resorts, will manage the hotel.

“The Staybridge sits in a very high profile position within the broader St. Paul Square historic district,” Leddy said. “For David and Michael and Don, it was an important piece of that broader equation of what St. Paul Square is going to become.”

The Staybridge Suites in San Antonio, Texas, as seen on Feb.  8, 2022. The group attempting to turn St. Paul Square into a nightlife destination has purchased the 11-story Staybridge Suites with plans to renovate the hotel.

The Staybridge Suites in San Antonio, Texas, as seen on Feb. 8, 2022. The group attempting to turn St. Paul Square into a nightlife destination has purchased the 11-story Staybridge Suites with plans to renovate the hotel.

Josie Norris / San Antonio Express News

They plan to begin sprucing up the lobby this year but further renovations are in the works, which will start after a master plan is finished for how the hotel and properties surrounding it fit with St. Paul Square’s revitalization, Leddy said.

Improvements will include upgrading the hotel’s exterior lighting and the pool area.

The Staybridge will continue catering to tourists, military personnel, student groups and businesses for now, but Leddy hopes to attract more convention-goers and visitors in the long-term.

“It’s another important hub of tourism, commerce, retail, restaurant, office, hospitality — clustered in a very unique part of San Antonio,” he said.

St. Paul Square was once farmland that supported the Mission San Antonio de Valero, or Alamo. It later was an entertainment, business and transportation hub and home of the city’s oldest mainly Black congregation.

But it declined as train travel decreased, residents moved to the suburbs and I-37 cutt off the area from downtown.

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