Consultant hired to look at hotel for Medina

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 June 2014 at 12:00 am

MEDINA – The Orleans Economic Development Agency has hired a consultant to do a feasibility study for a new hotel in Medina.

Orleans County doesn’t have a brand name hotel in the county. That is one reason why county officials believe Orleans has the lowest visitor spending of any county in the state. Many of the visitors are day-trippers. A brand name hotel could prompt more visitors to stay and spend money in the county.

The Orleans Economic Development Agency voted on Friday to pay Interim Hospitality Consultants $3,500 to do a feasibility study for a hotel in the Medina area. Interim is based in Tallahassee, Fla.

Cobblestone Inn officials have visited the county twice to look at potential sites for a hotel, said Jim Whipple, EDA chief executive officer.

The company prefers Medina over Albion because Albion is on Route 98 and not too far from the cluster of hotels in Batavia.

“Medina is away from the Batavia strip,” Whipple said.

Cobblestone hotels tend to locally owned and in smaller markets. Whipple thinks Orleans County could prove to be an ideal marketplace.

Many visitors come for family events, reunions, graduation parties and business travel, as well as for other special events, he said. The proposed STAMP site in the town of Alabama, which is projected to bring 10,000 jobs to the community, could also make the Medina area attractive for a hotel.

Interim will evaluate the market potential of a new hotel; project levels of market penetration, occupancy and average room rate for the first five years of operation; comment on appropriate number, types and sizes of guest rooms, food and beverage facilities, meeting rooms and other amenities; prepare projections of cash flow from operations; and provide a written conclusion on financial projections for a proposed hotel.