Sun | Aug 20, 2017

Bogdanovich to invest in Renfrew Hotel venture - Project a decade in the pipeline

Published:Sunday | July 17, 2016 | 7:00 AMSteven Jackson
Businessman and investor, Joe Bogdanovich.

The dream of architect Evan Williams to build the Renfrew Hotel in Kingston will now take form with a revelation by the that businessman Joe Bogdanovich will invest in the project.

The hotel now seems set to begin construction on Monday after a decade of planning.

"The Renfrew Hotel is the latest investment in the Jamaican economy by American investor/entrepreneur Joe Bogdanovich and his first in the hospitality sector," stated a media advisory issued on Friday.

Williams confirmed that Bogdanovich would invest in the project but declined to reveal additional details until the media launch on Monday.

Additionally Bogdanovich was travelling and not available for comment, according to a mobile phone recording connected to his music firm Downsound Records.

It's likely that the businessman's attention is fully engaged by Reggae Sumfest, an annual music festival scheduled for this week, July 17-23, and a business in which he made an investment this year.

The source of Bogdanovich's wealth remains largely private with much of his public investments in Jamaica occurring within the last 24 months. He has called Jamaica home now for several years.

In recent times, Bogdanovich, who is best known for his music production company, Downsound Records, has also added KLE Group, which operates Usain Bolt's Tracks and Records, and retail chain Hardware & Lumber Limited to his portfolio of Jamaican investments.

Renfrew Hotel aims to offer five-star boutique amenities that cater mainly to the business traveller. The Renfrew will add 32 exclusive units and eight serviced two-bedroom apartments to Kingston's hotel room stock.

The project first conceived in 2006 was priced at roughly US$7 million. Williams' architectural and interior design firm, Design Collaborative is known for designs at Sandals Resorts, Couples, Super Clubs, the Guardsman Group and his own Red Bones Cafe.

According to the Jamaica Tourist Board, Kingston had 94,100 visitors between January to May this year or 10 per cent of total stopover arrivals. Many of those visitors, however, are relatives visiting families resident in Jamaica and therefore would stay outside the hotels. The largest competitors for business hotels in Kingston include the Courtyard by Marriott, Spanish Court, Terra Nova, The Courtleigh and Jamaica Pegasus.

steven.jackson@gleanerjm.com