1. Real Estate

Marriott Edition to bring five-star hotel ambitions to Water Street Tampa

The developers of Water Street Tampa announced Thursday that a 173-room Marriott Edition boutique hotel to be built directly across from Amalie Arena could be Tampa's first five-star hotel. [Rendering courtesy Strategic Property Partners]
Published Apr. 20, 2018

TAMPA — At the Gramercy Park Hotel in New York City, hotelier Ian Schrager transformed a Jazz Age building with its own rich history into a destination offering even more heady experiences — extravagant, edgy and bohemian.

In Tampa, Schrager will have a blank slate to work with: a prime corner in Water Street Tampa, where developers announced Thursday he will help Marriott International create what they hope will be Tampa's first five-star hotel, a 173-room Marriott Edition.

The Marriott Edition is expected to open in early 2021 as part of a 26-story tower to be built at the northwest corner of Channelside Drive and Water Street, across the street from Amalie Arena.

It will include a rooftop pool with an adjacent bar and restaurant, top-of-the-line spa and fitness center, a second high-end restaurant on the ground floor and retail spaces designed to activate the street and draw visitors.

Marriott already operates the 727-room Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina. In addition, construction is scheduled to start next week on a 519-room JW Marriott with a projected opening date in 2020.

Together, the three hotels will give Water Street Tampa (and Marriott) more than 1,400 hotel rooms and 150,000 square feet of meeting and event space.

GAME-CHANGERS: How Water Street Tampa's hotels are expected to help Tampa pursue more upscale conventions

"We think this really grows the market and economic activity," Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik said in a recent interview. Vinik teamed up with billionaire Bill Gates and his private venture fund, Cascade Investment, to create Strategic Property Partners, the development company for the $3 billion Water Street Tampa project.

The company, often shortened to SPP, bought the Waterside Marriott for $150 million in 2014 and is working to complete $40 million in upgrades by next spring. It is building the JW Marriott and Marriott Edition.

Of the three, the Marriott Edition is expected to offer the most luxury. Marriott has Edition hotels in New York City, Miami and West Hollywood, plus Abu Dhabi, Bali, Bangkok, Barcelona, Bodrum in Turkey, Doha, Dubai, London, Reykjavik, Shanghai, Singapore and Wuhan in China.

"We are constantly seeking collaborators that will build upon, enhance and exceed our original vision for Water Street Tampa," Strategic Property Partners CEO James Nozar said in an announcement of the Marriott Edition. The company found that, he said, in the partnership between Marriott and the Ian Schrager Co.

Schrager's company owns, develops, manages and brands high-end hotels, residential and mixed use projects, and he worked with Marriott to launch its luxury Edition brand. At the Gramercy Park Hotel, he took a building from the mid-1920s and, he once told an interviewer, tried to give it the sense of spontaneity you would find in an artist's home or studio in spare-no-expense surroundings.

"As for the particular school of 'bohemian' and 'edgy' Schrager opted for at the Gramercy Park Hotel, do not think 'starving young artist in an East Village tenement,' " former Vogue editor Charles Gandee wrote in Travel & Leisure in 2009. "Think Peggy Guggenheim in Venice, at home in her art-filled Palazzo Venier dei Leoni on the Grand Canal."

The Edition will be designed by New York architect Morris Adjmi, who previously has worked on just a few projects in Florida and none in Tampa. Admji will collaborate with the Florida architecture and planning firm Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe & Associates, and interior designers Roman and Williams.

In a statement released through SPP, Marriott executive Kevin Montano outlined the goals for the Edition: "Timeless design. Uncompromising quality. Impeccable modern service."

MORE: Go here for more Business News

Contact Richard Danielson at or (813) 226-3403. Follow @Danielson_Times


  1. An aerial view of Mandalay Point in Clearwater where three expensive properties have sold since July. The Thorn Collection
    It was the best month overall in several months for the four-county area
  2. The sign for Tyrone Square Mall. JAY CONNNER  |  Tampa Bay Times
    The story behind the ever-present name involves St. Pete’s first airport and a bootlegging mogul.
  3. The University of South Florida has earned national accolades for its push to raise graduation rates. Student loan debt in Florida is so crushing that it makes it hard to afford a house.
    Staggering debt loads make it hard to buy a home.
  4. Casey Cane, chairman of the Pinellas County Housing Finance Authority. Pinellas County
    An inspector general’s report says he also engaged in "unethical behavior'' as a contractor.
  5. Tampa Bay homeowners are now able to sell their homes to Zillow. Zillow
    It joins Opendoor and Offerpad in making "instant'' offers.
  6. The microbrewery Double Branch Artisanal Ales is the first tenant signed at The Grove after the acquisition of the Wesley Chapel shopping center last month by Mishorim-Gold Properties for nearly $63 million. Double Branch Artisanal Ales.
    Mark Gold wants The Grove at Wesley Chapel to become the community’s downtown
  7. 580 Corporate Center in Oldsmar Jones Lang LaSalle Capital Markets
    The six-building center is 91 percent occupied.
  8. The Doc Webb house, which became a point of contention over its historic status. LUIS SANTANA  |  Tampa Bay Times
    The City Council will vote on amended regulations about third-party designation meant to quell verbal and legal skirmishes over historic preservation
  9. A South Florida developer plans a condo tower on the parking lot between the Northern Trust building, left, and the Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront. SUSAN TAYLOR MARTIN  |  Susan Taylor Martin
    South Florida company plans a 35-story tower next to a Hilton hotel.
  10. An image from the web site of Realtor Michael Schaffer's real estate company. [Realty Resources] WWW.TAMPABAYHOMEREALTOR.COM/TEAM  |  Screen grab
    Michael Schaffer still has active listings