Two new hotels break ground

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By the numbers

Hampton Inn, west of Holiday Inn of Craig

• Four stories, 89 rooms

• Two meeting rooms, one sized for a small board meeting, and one large enough to accommodate 50 to 60 people

• Indoor pool

• Roughly 69,500 square feet

Candlewood Inn & Suites, southeast corner of Colorado Highway 13 and First Street

• Three stories, 76 rooms

• Exercise room

• Cupboard kitchen

• Free laundry room

• 24/7 front desk

• Roughly 44,000 square feet

Two new hotels, a Hampton Inn and a Candlewood Inn & Suites, recently broke ground near the Colorado Highway 13 and First Street intersection.

Anson Excavating & Pipe Inc. crews broke ground on the Hampton Inn site west of the Holiday Inn of Craig on April 30.

Falgun Patel, who is managing the project for Shree Inc. out of the company's Wyoming offices, said the company expects to have the hotel open by May 2009, depending on weather.

"We are working to make it one of the best in the area," he said. "This is one of the first of a new kind of prototype for Hampton Inns. I guarantee you, Craig will have one of the nicest hotels in the area."

The hotel is planned to have 89 rooms built on four stories, including suites and one-bedrooms. There also will be two meeting rooms - one accommodating parties between 50 and 60 people - and an indoor pool

Patel said his company places an emphasis on hiring local contractors to build the hotel and local workers to staff it.

"The people there have been very, very good," Patel said. "We try to hire as many people locally as we can so the money can spread around the town."

Although the Craig Planning and Zoning Commission has not reviewed the hotel's site plans, Community Development Director Dave Costa said he allowed the project to proceed with some site work.

Developers needed to raise the site's ground level, Costa said, and that kind of project would not cause issues for the city.

Patel plans to appear at the Planning Commission meeting May 19 to introduce final site plans.

Afterward, the Planning Commission will make a recommendation to the Craig City Council, which will decide on the site plans. If approved, the plans are cleared for construction.

The Candlewood Inn & Suites being built on the southeast corner of Colo. 13 and First Street is exactly what Moffat County could use, said developer Rick Hill, of Mars Development.

Each of Candlewood's 76 rooms will be extended stay suites with each one including a kitchen area. The idea is to provide a place for transient workers to stay while they work in the area, Hill said.

"Our model was that the oil and gas demographic is that whole Green River Valley Basin," he said. "You read your supply and demand for hotels; it's huge.

"I think your town is growing fast enough, it needs an extended stay (hotel) like this."

Wagner Construction broke ground at the site Monday. Hill said he expects to open between September and October this year, but he had planned to open sooner.

"I've been waiting two months for the snow to melt," he said. "Even though we wanted to, there's no way we could have started before now."

To accommodate its guests, Candlewood will feature a free laundry room and a "cupboard kitchen," Hill said. The kitchen is basically a store of frozen and refrigerated food for guests, who will pay either by charging food to their rooms or paying the front desk.

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