December 30, 2011, Pensacola News Journal, PNJ.com
Navy Federal Credit Union and Pen Air Federal Credit Union will finance a $13.2 million hotel project led by developer Julian MacQueen at Pensacola International Airport. MacQueen said groundbreaking for the 127-room Hyatt Place will be in January, and construction will be completed in spring 2013.
“We’ve done a lot of foundation and infrastructure work on that site already, and we’ll be starting the vertical construction as soon as possible,” MacQueen said.
In the deal that closed late Friday, Navy Federal said it will finance 90 percent of the project and Pen Air will fund the remaining 10 percent.
This is the second time in as many years that Virginia-based Navy Federal and Pensacola-based Pen Air have jointly financed a hotel developed by MacQueen’s Gulf Breeze-based Innisfree Hotels.
Their previous partnership in 2009 resulted in construction of the $60 million, 206-room Holiday Inn Resort on Pensacola Beach.
The Hyatt Pace is being built under the banner of Sandspur Development LLC on 11.44 acres of airport property leased from the City of Pensacola.
“We are proud to work collaboratively with Innisfree Hotels and Pen Air to help make a positive impact on this community,” said Debbie Calder, senior vice president at Navy Federal’s Heritage Oaks operation headquartered in Beulah. Pen Air’s staff agrees.
“Our local economy needs a boost right now, and we’re more than happy to help it along,” said Pen Air Chief Operating Officer Carroll Scarborough.
Phase two of the Sandspur development plan calls for construction of several retail and professional offices on the site.