PRESS RELEASE — 21c Museum Hotels and Junius Real Estate Partners (“Junius”), a specialized real estate investment unit of J.P. Morgan Private Bank, announced today that Junius Hospitality Partners (“JHP”), a fund managed by Junius, has made an investment in 21c Museum Hotels. Under the agreement, JHP will deploy dedicated capital toward building or acquiring properties for 21c’s expansion. This dedicated real estate capital will allow 21c to develop up to $250 million in projects. As part of the transaction, JHP will also own a minority stake in the operating company.
“21c is positioned for meaningful growth,” said 21c Museum Hotels Co-Founder and CEO, Steve Wilson. “We have devoted significant time and care in finding the right strategic partner for this next phase. The Junius team has an appreciation for our brand, our mission and our company culture. Their forward-thinking investment strategy and experience in both the hotel industry and in real estate development make them an ideal partner.”
“Junius is extremely excited to be partnering with 21c,” said Richard Gomel, Partner and Senior Investment Officer at Junius. “We have been thoroughly impressed by the quality and passion of their team to deliver meaningful, innovative and authentic guest experiences while having a positive impact in the local communities they serve. Their strong brand, combined with their solid operating platform, have yielded attractive investment returns and enhanced real estate values. We look forward to participating in the growth of this special company.”
Dedicated Junius capital will give 21c the ability to develop up to $250 million in projects. Financing has closed on their first joint venture, the development of 21c Museum Hotel Nashville. 21c Nashville, a historic rehabilitation of downtown’s Gray & Dudley Building, is slated to open the first half of 2017. The property will include 124 hotel rooms, over 10,500 square feet of museum and event space and five rooftop-level rooms, including two suites, with private terraces. 21c will manage the property and have joint ownership.
21c has doubled its footprint over the past 18 months, adding three new hotels and restaurants and 31,000 square feet of contemporary art museum and event space. The company now operates six hotels, seven restaurants and employs over 1,000 people. 21c has added significant resources to its Louisville, Kentucky headquarters in all areas of the business including corporate sales, operations, museum, design, marketing and other functions.
About 21c Museum Hotels
21c Museum Hotels, an award-winning hospitality company based in Louisville, Kentucky, is pushing the boundaries of both the museum and hotel worlds to create a new kind of travel experience. The company was founded as a single property by contemporary art collectors and preservationists Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, whose mission was to share innovative contemporary art with the public and participate in the revitalization of downtown Louisville. The couple opened the first 21c Louisville in 2006 along downtown’s West Main Street, rehabilitating a series of 19th century warehouses to create an innovative union of genuine hospitality, thoughtful design and culinary creativity — all anchored by a contemporary art museum with thought-provoking exhibitions, interactive site-specific art installations and a full roster of cultural programming. Today, 21c operates six hotels and seven restaurants in Louisville, Kentucky; Cincinnati, Ohio; Bentonville, Arkansas; Durham, North Carolina; Lexington, Kentucky and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. 21c Nashville is currently under construction. Projects are under development in Kansas City, Missouri and Indianapolis, Indiana. The company is equally focused on creating unique, chef-driven restaurants that are as much a part of the community as the hotel. 21c operates a diverse roster of restaurants including Proof on Main at 21c Louisville, Metropole at 21c Cincinnati, The Hive at 21c Bentonville, Counting House at 21c Durham, Lockbox at 21c Lexington, Mary Eddy’s Kitchen x Lounge at 21c Oklahoma City and Garage Bar in Louisville, Kentucky. Visit 21cMuseumHotels.com for more information.
About Junius Real Estate Partners
Junius Real Estate Partners is the specialized real estate investment unit of J.P. Morgan Private Bank with 14 professionals located in New York, New York. Junius has invested over $750 million of equity in 11 transactions involving 26 underlying properties since 2012, through single-asset and pooled investment vehicles.
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