Jekyll Island, Georgia, USA – 22 May 2013 – Jekyll Oceanfront Hotel, a nationally recognized real estate development company, New Castle Hotels & Resorts (NCHR), an award winning, independent third-party hotel manager, owner and developer and other investors) today broke ground on the $41 million Westin Jekyll Island, a 200-room, convention-class, beachfront hotel that will open in September 2014 as part of the Jekyll Island Beach Village project. The ceremonies were held at the construction site, 110 Ocean Way, adjacent to the new Jekyll Island Convention Center.
“The Westin Jekyll Island is pivotal to the entire Beach Village development,” said Dave Curtis, managing partner of Jekyll Oceanfront Hotel, LLC. “It’s the perfect complement to the wonderful new convention center and the island’s relaxed and gracious ambiance. We are extremely proud to help write yet another new and exciting chapter in Jekyll Island’s rich and fabled history.”
The Beach Village project, developed by the Jekyll Island Authority, (JIA) is part of a plan to reinvigorate the island’s tourism economy and includes the only beachfront convention center in the southeast. The 128,000 square foot Jekyll Island Convention Center opened in May 2012 and is the centerpiece of the project which also includes an oceanfront promenade, village green, restaurants, retail shopping and Great Dunes Park.
“With the groundbreaking of the new Westin, we are seeing one more step toward completing our end goals of island revitalization,” said Richard Royal, chairman Jekyll Island Authority. “This is a thrilling day for all of us and we have much to be excited about as we look to Jekyll’s future.”
“The Westin Jekyll Island will be a catalyst that enables Jekyll Island revitalization to achieve its full potential,” said Jones Hooks, executive director of the Jekyll Island Authority. “Westin Hotels and Resorts are marketed as havens of wellness and rejuvenation, which is exactly the right brand for Jekyll Island. Now that Westin construction is underway, the Jekyll Island Authority is much closer to realizing our goals of increased visitation and financial prosperity. This stunning new lodging facility will be a significant draw for Georgia’s Golden Isles.”
“Jekyll Island’s style of laidback luxury and environmental awareness meshes perfectly with Westin’s goal of creating an oasis of well being for travelers,” said Arik Kono, vice president North America development and acquisitions Starwood Hotels and Resorts. “Westin will reach the 200th hotel mark later this year and with that milestone in sight, we’re proud to join with our longtime development partners, New Castle Hotels and Resorts, in setting the stage for the next 100 Westins worldwide.”
With breathtaking ocean views and direct beach access, The Westin Jekyll Island will feature both meeting and banquet facilities alongside a full suite of Westin’s signature amenities and services. It will include a full-service restaurant and the brand’s signature WestinWORKOUT program all designed to promote overall wellbeing. LEED design elements, coupled with the brand’s room designs which are 60 percent more sustainable than earlier iterations will ensure that the hotel will minimize its impact on the environmentally sensitive barrier island and meet guests’ desires for a more healthful hotel experience.
Close to the island’s National Historic Landmark District, The Westin Jekyll Island also will be convenient to the island’s four golf courses, 10 miles of barrier island beaches and a variety of outdoor recreation, including marsh eco-tours, the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, more than 20 miles of bike paths and kayaking.
Upon completion in September 2014, the hotel will be operated by New Castle Hotels and Resorts.