Courtyard by Marriott coming to Holland

A sketch of the Courtyard Marriott that's planned for a vacant lot in downtown Holland. (April 16, 2014)

HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD) — Big changes are in the future for a block of downtown Holland, as groundbreaking is expected this summer for a new hotel.

The proposed five-story Courtyard by Marriott is expected to go in at a 1.75-acre vacant lot in the 100 block of East 8th Street between the Plaza East office building and the Macatawa Bank branch.

Proposed site for the new Courtyard Marriott in downtown Holland. (April 16, 2014)
(Vacant lot on E. 8th Street)

The Courtyard will fill a need for more hotel rooms downtown.

Tulip Time Executive Director Gwen Auwerda said she hears complaints every year from visitors who have to find rooms on the outskirts of Holland.

“We do have a lot of people asking, ‘How can I come in to (Holland) and can be able to walk and not drive into town?'” Auwerda said. “I think it’s going to be a wonderful asset for us to have more hotel rooms right downtown.”

The Courtyard would become third hotel in downtown Holland, featuring 140 rooms, two restaurants, a pool and other amenities.

The Holland City Planning Commission Approved plans for the hotel at its Tuesday night meeting.

“I do know we are a spot that has a lot of tourists,” Holland Mayor Kurt Dykstra said. “We hear stories about people wanting to be downtown but staying elsewhere because, simply, there’s no room. So this should help with some of those issues.”

A lease deal with the city will provide parking for hotel guests at the city-owned ramp across 7th Street.

“All of our rooms on 8th Street will have balconies, so you’ll be able to catch the Tulip Time parade from a step above everybody else,” said Peter Beukema, whose Holland-based Suburban Inns will build and operate the $15.5 million Courtyard.

Tulip Time lasts only 9 days in May, but Beukema says downtown Holland can support three hotels year around.

The Courtyard fills a certain demographic niche.

“Typically older families, So families with high school, middle school-age kids and older. And the couples — young couples to older couples,” Beukema said. “The demographic of the customer of the courtyard is the one that’s going to stay. They’re going to shop, dine and really enjoy all the great amenities downtown Holland has to offer.”

Beukema, whose company owns other hotels and motels in West Michigan says it should take about a year to complete the project.

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