Sunstone Hotel to buy Boston Park Plaza for $250m

The Boston Park Plaza Hotel & Towers is being sold for $250 million to Sunstone Hotel Investors Inc., a California-based lodging real estate investment, almost double the price it sold for two years ago.

Sunstone announced this week that it is buying the 1,053-room hotel from the Rockpoint Group, a Boston-based real estate private equity group, and longtime hotel owner Donald Saunders.

The Rockpoint partnership acquired the 86-year-old Park Plaza in 2011 from Starwood Hotels and Resorts for $126 million, according to the Real Reporter, a media group that covers the Greater Boston real estate market.

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The deal is expected to close by the third quarter of this year. Sunstone plans to keep the hotel unbranded and invest an initial $15 million in the property, including upgrading elevators and other infrastructure and renovating 43,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor and below-ground levels.

In a few years, Sunstone may invest as much as $50 million and undertake a major repositioning of the hotel, chief executive Ken Cruse said in a conference call Tuesday.

Sunstone owns nearly 30 hotels nationwide, including the Boston Marriott Long Wharf and the Boston Marriott Quincy.

The $124 million sale price increase reflects investments Rockpoint made in the Park Plaza Hotel, including adding about 100 rooms, as well as the strength of the Boston lodging market, said Matthew Arrants, executive vice president of the hotel consultancy Pinnacle Advisory Group.

Occupancy has been at or near capacity in Boston since 2011, Arrants said, hovering around 78 percent, and there is no imminent new supply that will push occupancy levels down.