A group including Siesta property investor Michael Holderness acquired the Siesta Key Resort & Suites in the Village this week.
In the largest commercial sale on Siesta Key in at least decades, a Sarasota-based investment group bought a Village hotel for $9.7 million.
Sarasota Realtor-turned-hotelier Michael Holderness is managing the group that bought Siesta Beach Resort & Suites with plans to redevelop the hotel and rebrand the concept as Siesta Key Beach Resort and Spa. Holderness serves as CEO of Beachside Management, which will run the revamped property that’s anchored at 5311 Ocean Blvd. with more rooms across Calle Miramar behind Blasé Cafe.
“We’re going to throw a lot of love into the property,” said Holderness, a Sarasota native. “The previous owner took great care of it, so it has great bones.”
Work is slated to start on the resort in August, with a grand opening to come the day after Christmas.
With 60 rooms, the Siesta Key Resort — formerly a Best Western — is the largest bonafide hotel on an island whose transient accommodations are mostly homes and condominiums converted into vacation rentals. Holderness said he might scale back the number of units to make room for a spa area.
This week, Sarasota County approved the use of a 4COP liquor license on the property, though Holderness declined to comment on any plans for a restaurant or bar.
The new owners plan to invest $1 million into renovating the property and another $700,000 into operating systems and other technology. The project is designed to cater to families who want to do more than just hang out at the beach through the addition of a variety of amenities, including stand-up paddleboard, bicycle, kayak and other rentals.
“We want to give people a whole new guest experience,” said Holderness. “When you touch the faucet you’re going to know it’s quality.”
Architect Mark Sultana, partner with DSDG Architects, is working on the redesign. His firm is also responsible for the coming Oceana condominiums on the north end of Ocean Boulevard. The infrastructure will feature a lot of automation, Holderness said.
“What’s trending now is guests want to come to a place and feel comfortable and get everything the second they think about it, but they don’t want to be bothered by staff, either,” he said. “We’re doing something that’s never been done before.”