Hotel renovations could benefit Downtown South Bend - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Hotel renovations could benefit Downtown South Bend

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"The success of this building is paramount of this city," says DoubleTree General Manager, Leonard Clifton.

He says big changes are happening at the DoubleTree hotel. The atrium and lobby are getting upgrades. Each room will be gutted and refinished. There's a new restaurant and work is taking place on the future site of a Starbucks. It's an investment that will cost over 8 million dollars.

"We're obviously taking a risk. There's risk with any project you do." But he says they wouldn't be investing the money if they weren't expecting success.

"There is business in South Bend. There's several hotels in South Bend, a lot of businesses tied around the existing community and the college and we feel there's enough for us to sustain," says Clifton.

But he says all of downtown could reap the benefits. "To attract visitors you have to be able to house them. We all rely on each other. The quality of my product is going to directly impact the customer that is using the Century Center, the Morris theater."

At the Century Center, Stacey Church says they welcome the changes taking place across the street. "As we try to attract more conventions to South Bend, obviously we need a hotel that can house conventioners."

And she says those visitors will want places to eat and shop, so the success trickles down to other downtown businesses. "With that type of renovation we can expect to see more out-of-town guests and just general excitement about the downtown destination."

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