Ace Hotel Boutique Chain Consolidates Ownership After Years of Turmoil

Courtesy: Nancy Trejos | News Source: skift.com

Ace Hotel Group, the hip boutique hotel chain created in 1999, has finalized the consolidation of its ownership after some rocky years and legal battles.

The company is to be held by three active partners: Brad Wilson, Kelly Sawdon, and Stefanos Economou.

The estate of co-founder Alex Calderwood, who died in November 2013, will no longer be involved with the company after years of lawsuits.

“There were some disputes around that,” Ace Hotel Group President Brad Wilson told Skift. “Since then we’ve been able to clean everything up and come up with amicable agreements with all parties and structure the company really just within the active partners who are active in the day to day operation.”

“For us, I think it’s a solid moment to kind of take a breath and realize the company is now fully controlled by the people who actually run the company,” Wilson said. “This is an opportunity to really just focus on our growth. It’s a lot easier doing that when you have people who have shared goals.”

Calderwood founded Ace Hotels with partners Wade Weigel and Doug Herrick in 1999 with the opening of the Ace Hotel Seattle in what was once a maritime workers’ hotel. Ace’s style — with its bustling lobbies, art displays and guest room amenities such as guitars — has been replicated by other brands such as Mama Shelter and Freehand. Even large hotel chains such as Marriott International and Hilton have created similar design-forward brands to appeal to younger travelers.

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