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In executive session, the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority’s Board of Commissioners approved a “consent to ownership transfer” of The Marriott Hotel at its most recent meeting, making way for the purchase of the facility by another owner.

The deal has yet to close and the Gazette-Mail does not know the buyer. With an infusion of more than $15 million to $20 million by a new owner, the property will be allowed to maintain The Marriott flagship, one commissioner said. The hotel hasn’t been remodeled since an $8 million project in 2013.

CURA executive director Ron Butlin acknowledged that commissioners approved the use of the land on which the hotel sits, but would not divulge any other details.

“They have a ground lease,” he said. “That’s separate from a building lease, and separate from any mall transactions, though they were built around the same time.”

Kanawha County tax records list the renewal authority as the property owner, in care of Xenia Hotels of Orlando, Florida. Xenia owns a host of luxury and “upper upscale” hotels across the country, its website says, including those operated by Marriott, Hilton and Hyatt. Xenia bought The Marriott in 2011.

The Marriott has occupied a prominent place downtown since its mid-1980s construction, directly across Lee Street from the Town Center mall. It traditionally has served as an anchor for those attending Civic Center conventions, athletic events and those looking for upscale lodging in a central place.

Greg Stone covers business.

He can be reached at 304-348-5124 or

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