I Am Downtown Boston: The Godfrey Hotel Builds on Area’s Renaissance

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Posted March 24, 2014 by Cheryl Fenton in Business
George Jordan, senior vice president of Oxford Hotels & Resorts

Walking by the corner of Washington Street and Temple Place in Downtown Boston, you might notice something big is in the works. The high-style facade and strong gray stone exterior can’t conceal the excitement inside. The location will soon be the home of the new The Godfrey Hotel Boston, a 135,000-square-foot, 238-room boutique hotel opening in late spring 2015. With ground-floor retail shops, a hot spot restaurant, and a trend-setting coffee shop, this hotel is sure to house the same bustling social arena seen at the recently opened Godfrey Hotel in Chicago’s trendy River North neighborhood.

We sat down with George Jordan, senior vice president of Oxford Hotels & Resorts, to talk about The Godfrey Hotel Boston and why officials chose Downtown Crossing to be its home.

The Voice of Downtown Boston: What were your thoughts on choosing Boston as a sister property for your new Chicago location?

George Jordan: We have identified several key markets that we want to be in. Generally, we seek first-tier markets, and so, on the East Coast, Boston and New York are critical. Boston is, without exception, a world-class city and, along with Philadelphia and New York, the birthplace of our nation. With its long colonial history and [as] the heartbeat of New England, it is, in may ways, also the heartbeat of the Northeast.

Along with its rich history, it is also at the forefront of technology, education, banking, and culture. It has a bustling tourism trade and the convention centers continue to drive traffic to hotels. Coupled with fabulous mass transit, ease of access to Logan, and wonderful nightlife, Boston is, without question, a first-tier city.

Godfrey

We’re very excited to bring Godfrey to Downtown Crossing. Photo Credit: Jimmy Prudente

 

The Voice: When deciding on a location within our city, what did you keep in mind? What was on your checklist of must-haves?

Jordan: Many variables must be right before we can move forward, including location, market condition, purchase price, demand, competition, and ease of entry. The Boston project worked on all fronts, and we’re very excited to bring Godfrey to Downtown Crossing. Downtown Crossing is experiencing a renaissance similar to what happened to State Street in Chicago. With very high foot traffic, proximity to the Common, and great public transportation, the corner of Washington [Street] and Temple [Place] is at the epicenter. It is also very near to the redevelopment of [the former] Filene’s building (Millennium Tower Boston) and multiple residential projects. Other lifestyle boutique hotels in the area confirm the boom happening in Downtown Crossing.

The Voice: How did the Downtown Crossing area outshine Boston’s other bustling neighborhoods?

Jordan: Downtown Crossing is close to both downtown and Back Bay. Just one block from our location is the busiest foot traffic intersection in all New England. It is one block away from Boston Common and very close to a number of “demand generators,” including corporate offices. For all these reasons, we believe Downtown Crossing is resurgent. We like to be where people are going but get there first.

The Voice: What are some standout aspects of the hotel that you would like to share?

Jordan: The rooms are graciously appointed and very urban-contemporary. We will have the perfect balance of tech, touch, style, and amenities. We’re somewhat tight-lipped concerning the final product for Godfrey Boston, as the “reveal” is ultimately part of our paid advertising and PR efforts. Notwithstanding this comment, we will have rooms designed by Getty’s Design Group that are extremely comfortable, and loaded with tech. We’re also in advanced negotiations with two tenants for a chef-inspired concept restaurant and a hip coffee bar. Our lobby bar will itself be a showstopper, and we will offer executive lounge amenities for discerning travelers.

With the very name “Godfrey” boasting a European origin and meaning “peace and welcome” to travelers, this is sure to be one property that both Bostonians and guests of the city will enjoy.

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