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Business & Finance

AJ Capital Partners and Cornell University to Develop Graduate Hotel on Cornell Tech's Roosevelt Island Campus

NEW YORK, N.Y. March 16, 2017 - AJ Capital Partners and Cornell University are announcing plans to build a hotel on the university’s new Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island. Cornell Tech, which will open the first phase of the new campus September 2017, is a revolutionary model for graduate education, extending Cornell University’s research and academic prowess to the heart of New York City by bringing together faculty, business leaders, tech entrepreneurs and students in a catalytic environment to produce visionary results. Opening in 2019, the hotel will create a living room for NYC’s tech community and extend the impact of the Cornell Tech campus. The hotel design will reflect history of Roosevelt Island community and spirit of innovation.

AJ Capital Partners will open “Graduate Roosevelt Island,” a 196-room ground-up hotel development with panoramic views of the Manhattan skyline in 2019. Designed by world-class architectural firm Snohetta, the hotel will be located in the heart of the campus alongside the Verizon Executive Education Center, which will have conference, executive program and academic workshop space, also opening in 2019.

“Graduate Roosevelt Island is the type of transformative project that has come to epitomize our company,” said Ben Weprin, founder and CEO of AJ Capital Partners. “The hotel will sit prominently at the gateway to Cornell Tech, the most innovative academic campus in the world; and will offer guests, campus visitors and Roosevelt Island citizens a truly distinctive and unique experience. We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Cornell University and to introduce Graduate Hotels to New York City.”

Created for travelers who seek memory-making journeys, Graduate Hotels are part of a well-curated, thoughtfully crafted collection of hotels that reside in the most dynamic, university-anchored markets across the country. Every property celebrates and commemorates the optimistic energy of its community, while offering an extended retreat to places that often played host to the best days of our lives. Locations include Ann Arbor, Mi.; Athens, Ga.; Charlottesville, Va.; Madison, Wi.; Oxford, Ms.; and Tempe, Az., as well as Berkeley, Ca.; Lincoln, Ne.; Minneapolis, Mn; and Richmond, Va. slated to open in 2017, and Bloomington, In. and Seattle, Wa. in 2018.

The hotel’s iconic slender profile marks the entrance to the campus while offering guests unobstructed views of the skyline through floor to ceiling windows. The hotel’s comfortable residential aesthetic will reference the history of Roosevelt Island, while also capturing the spirit of innovation inspired by the Cornell Tech campus. The property will include a full-service restaurant, rooftop bar with expansive views of Manhattan, and 5,200 square feet of flexible meeting and event facilities for hotel guests and the Roosevelt Island community.

Opening September 2017, the first phase of Cornell Tech’s Roosevelt Island campus will include three buildings: The Bloomberg Center, the campus’ first academic building; The Bridge, a building for innovative companies to locate on campus; and The House, a residential building for students, faculty and staff that aims to become the world’s first high-rise residential building constructed to “Passive House” energy efficiency standards.

When fully completed, the campus will span 12 acres on Roosevelt Island and house approximately 2,000 students and hundreds of faculty and staff. The campus master plan was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill with James Corner Field Operations, and includes a number of innovative features and facilities across a river-to-river campus with expansive views, a series of green, public spaces, and a seamless integration of indoor and outdoor areas. The campus will be one of the most environmentally friendly and energy-efficient campuses in the world.

About AJ Capital Partners

Adventurous Journeys Capital Partners, based in Chicago, is an accomplished team of hospitality and real estate investors whose innate passion is to create a one-of-a kind portfolio of timeless assets. The counter-culture investors acquire, design and develop transformative real estate throughout the United States, Mexico, and the Caribbean. In fall 2014, AJ Capital Partners launched the Graduate Hotels collection. AJ Capital Partners continues to grow its portfolio of lodging investments, firmly establishing the group as visionary leaders in the lifestyle-driven investment industry. For more information on AJ Capital Partners, please visit www.ajcpt.com.

About Cornell University

Located in Ithaca, N.Y. and New York City, Cornell is a private, Ivy League university and the land-grant university for New York State. Cornell's mission is to discover, preserve, and disseminate knowledge; produce creative work; and promote a culture of broad inquiry throughout and beyond the Cornell community. Cornell also aims, through public service, to enhance the lives and livelihoods of our students, the people of New York, and others around the world.

About Cornell Tech

Cornell Tech brings together faculty, business leaders, tech entrepreneurs, and students in a catalytic environment to reinvent the way we live in the digital age. Cornell Tech's temporary campus has been up and running at Google's Chelsea building since 2013, with a growing world -class faculty, and more than 200 masters and Ph.D. students who collaborate extensively with tech-oriented companies and organizations and pursue their own start-ups. Construction is underway on Cornell Tech's campus on Roosevelt Island, with a first phase due to open September 2017. Wh en fully completed, the campus will include 2 million square feet of state-of-the-art buildings, over 2 acres of open space, and will be home to more than 2,000 graduate students and hundreds of faculty and staff.

Contact:
Meg Connolly Communications
graduate@mcc-pr.com
212.505.8200

John Carberry
jjc338@cornell.edu
607 255 5353

Jovana Rizzo
jovana@berlinrosen.com
646-200-5329

Coming Up In The December Online Hotel Business Review




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Hotel Law: Issues & Events
There is not a single area of a hotel’s operation that isn’t touched by some aspect of the law. Hotels and management companies employ an army of lawyers to advise and, if necessary, litigate issues which arise in the course of conducting their business. These lawyers typically specialize in specific areas of the law – real estate, construction, development, leasing, liability, franchising, food & beverage, human resources, environmental, insurance, taxes and more. In addition, issues and events can occur within the industry that have a major impact on the whole, and can spur further legal activity. One event which is certain to cause repercussions is Marriott International’s acquisition of Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide. This newly combined company is now the largest hotel company in the world, encompassing 30 hotel brands, 5,500 hotels under management, and 1.1 million hotel rooms worldwide. In the hospitality industry, scale is particularly important – the most profitable companies are those with the most rooms in the most locations. As a result, this mega- transaction is likely to provoke an increase in Mergers & Acquisitions industry-wide. Many experts believe other larger hotel companies will now join forces with smaller operators to avoid being outpaced in the market. Companies that had not previously considered consolidation are now more likely to do so. Another legal issue facing the industry is the regulation of alternative lodging companies such as Airbnb and other firms that offer private, short-term rentals. Cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles and Santa Monica are at the forefront of efforts to legalize and control short-term rentals. However, those cities are finding it’s much easier to adopt regulations on short-term rentals than it is to actually enforce them. The December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine these and other critical issues pertaining to hotel law and how some companies are adapting to them.