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In 2016, Eric Holtze and his sister Sarah Treadway took over the family business. Their father, Steve Holtze, purchased the American National Building on 17th Street in 1993, converting it into the Magnolia Hotel Denver. That hotel served as a model for five other boutique urban hotels.
At the start of the year, the Magnolia hotels were running 75% full and operating ahead of budget. By April, occupancy was down to 10%. Staffing was cut deeply and managers were asked to take on day-to-day chores. For a brief period, Treadway was making beds, Holtze was folding laundry and the general manager was running the front desk.
“Everyone was doing what we could to take care of the few guests we had,” Treadway said. “We feel blessed because our team of people is so loyal and so dedicated. People were willing to jump in and work in every department.”
Loans under the Paycheck Protection Program provided relief this summer. By October, occupancy had crawled back above 40%, raising hopes the worst was behind. And then another surge of cases gripped the country, forcing tighter restrictions on the wedding receptions, business gatherings and other events that the Magnolia relies on.
Metro Denver hotels on average were only filling one out of three rooms on Dec. 5, which is down from an occupancy rate of 62.1% a year ago, according to STR, which tracks hotel statistics. The average rate hotels made per room rented was $76.89 a night versus $116.17 a year ago, which represents a decline of 34%.
In today’s Post, reporters Joe Rubino and Aldo Svaldi look at how months of empty rooms and discounted rates are catching up with hotel owners in Denver and across the country.
Some Denver area hotels dim the lights and wait for the creditors to come knocking as workers relying on unemployment, savings, hope with industry facing long road back from COVID
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See more great photos like this on The Denver Post’s Instagram account.
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