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Canadian firm plans 110-room hotel for Wellington

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Monday, Nov. 11, 2013, at 4:37 p.m.
  • Updated Monday, Nov. 11, 2013, at 4:37 p.m.

A Canadian-based real estate investment trust that specializes in hotels that serve railroads said it plans to build a 110-room hotel in Wellington

American Hotel Income Properties REIT said the hotel will be developed with partner SunOne Developments on a two-acre site in the seat of Sumner County.

The hotel, Oak Tree Inn, is slated to open in September, and it will include a Penny’s Diner that will be open 24 hours a day. The hotel will replace AHIP’s existing Oak Tree Inn, which is across the street from the site of the planned replacement facility at 1177 E. 16th in Wellington, about 35 miles south of Wichita. The first Oak Tree Inn in Wellington was opened in 1993 with 80 rooms, according to AHIP’s website.

The cost of the project was not disclosed.

The hotel in Wellington is one of two AHIP is partnering with SunOne to develop.

The other is a 50-room hotel in Glendive, Mont.

AHIP will provide SunOne $1.57 million in financing to develop the hotels, it said in a news release. Once they are complete, AHIP will purchase the properties for $12.35 million.

Both hotels are secured by railway contracts “that guarantee greater than 80 percent of the 160 total guestrooms for 10 years,” AHIP said in the release. It didn’t say which railroads the contracts are with.

An AHIP spokesman did not return phone calls on Monday.

Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway has an operation in Wellington with more than 140 employees.

AHIP, based in Vancouver, said in the release that it has 32 hotels in the U.S. with a total of 2,564 rooms that serve railway crews under contract.

Wichita-based TR Lodging Enterprises, which AHIP also owns, manages some of AHIP’s hotels, including the one in Wellington. TR Lodging was formerly Lodging Enterprises, 8080 E. Central, which developed the Oak Tree brand and the focus on providing hotel rooms specifically for rail crews.

Reach Jerry Siebenmark at 316-268-6576 or jsiebenmark@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jsiebenmark.

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