Memphis officials ink deal with Loew’s for Downtown hotel

This drawing shows the new Loew's Hotel proposed on Main Street on the left, with the 100 North Main building on the right.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A new convention center hotel in Downtown Memphis moved  one step closer to reality Tuesday.

Mayor Jim Strickland and Downtown Memphis Commission officials signed onto a letter of intent with Loews Hotels to build a hotel with at least 500 rooms at 140 North Main St., across the street from City Hall.

The letter states the hotel will be open by no later than Dec. 31, 2020. It also states that renovations to the Memphis Convention Center will be finished by Dec. 31, 2021.

To fund a portion of the development, the city has received state approval for a Tourism Development Zone incentive that will use a portion of the sales tax revenues generated by the hotel, and will seek a 5% tourism surcharge for up to 30 years, according to the letter. The Downtown Parking Authority will also lease 250 nearby parking spaces to the hotel.

Memphis tourism officials have said that a new, large hotel is needed to attract large conventions to the nearby Memphis Convention Center, which is undergoing renovations.

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