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Downtown Augusta hotel still on drawing board



AUGUSTA, Ga. – After more than four years, Augusta still awaits its first glimpse of a proposed fifth downtown hotel.

At last report, Florence, S.C.-based Naman Hotels is preparing renderings to present before the Augusta Historic Preservation Commission for design approval, said Augusta Downtown Development Authority Executive Director Margaret Woodard.

There is no date scheduled yet for the presentation, Woodard said Wednesday.

Doing business as Naman Augusta LLC, the hospitality company bought about 1.6 acres of property at 1140 Broad St. in October 2016. Now one parcel, it used to be five parcels held by several different owners who had to agree to sell. The parcels sold collectively for just over $3 million.

The current assessed value of the property is $1,185,456, according to Richmond County tax records.

Most of the site housed the Sky City discount department store until it closed in 1989. The building’s most recent tenant, Broad Street Bazaar, closed several years ago.

Naman Hotels’ property portfolio includes 20 hotels in North Carolina and South Carolina, the closest being the Holiday Inn Express and Suites on Whiskey Road in Aiken.

The proposed downtown hotel likely will be an Embassy Suites, one of the many brands of Hilton Hotels. Of Naman’s current hotels, 14 are Hilton brands – five Hampton Inn and Suites, five Tru by Hiltons, three Hilton Garden Inns and a Homewood Suites. Five are brands of hotelier IHG – Holiday Inn, and Holiday Inn Express and Suites. Naman also operates one Hyatt Place in North Charleston, S.C.

Several calls and emails to Naman Hotels were not immediately returned.

Four hotels are in Augusta’s historic downtown, and none of them are Hilton brands.

The Ramada by Wyndham is at 640 Broad St., the Holiday Inn Express is at 444 Broad and the Hyatt House, which opened in 2019, is at 1268 Broad. The Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center is at the top of Tenth Street.