GranducaHill Houston developer Giorgio Borlenghi has begun work on the Hotel Granduca Austin, an Italian-styled luxury hostelry that will command some of the highest nightly rates in Texas. Built on a hillside site in west Austin, the 9-story, 194-room boutique hotel is scheduled to be completed late next year, near the northwest corner of Bee Caves Road and Loop 360. The Hotel Granduca Austin will be competing in a rarified league with the Four Seasons Hotel and a handful of other Austin hotels in the highest tier of room rate, service and luxury amenities. Room rates are expected to be $300 a night, or more. “It’s in an area of town that’s underserved by hotels. It’s only 15 minutes away from downtown and from UT,” says Borlenghi. GranducaLogo The new hotel will be the second hotel bearing the “Granduca” brand name. The original Hotel Granduca, which has an average daily rate of $340, opened eight years ago near Houston’s Galleria. Hotel Granduca Austin is a joint venture between Borlenghi’s Houston-based Interfin Companies LP and Riverside Resources of Austin. Austin is by far the strongest hotel market in Texas with a citywide room rates and an average occupancy rate of 75 percent, which is basically as good as it gets, says hotel consultant Bruce Walker of Source Strategies. The only city to come close to Austin is Houston, with a 69 percent occupancy rate, but other major Texas cities are far behind Austin. “Austin is a very, very vibrant and amazing hotel market,” Borlenghi says. The Hotel Granduca in Houston is a member of “The Leading Hotels of the World,” a designation that will be sought for the Hotel Granduca Austin as well. Borlenghi says the long-range goal is to expand the Granduca brand to other markets in Texas and around the nation.

FMG has been engaged again for the brand development, marketing design and environmental graphics. The program will follow the design of the Hotel Granduca Houston.