The Houston Astros are getting into the hospitality business, but with a twist.
Our partners at the Palm Beach Post report the baseball franchise owner Jim Crane bought a vacant office building with the hopes of transforming it into a hotel. During Spring Training it will be for players and coaches, and the rest of the year, it'll be a hotel open to the public.
The empty 10-story office building that will soon be transformed into baseball history sits at the corner of Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard and Congress Avenue. It’s also a game changer for the players in need of a place to stay before the regular season starts.
“I think if I'm a player in the Astros organization, I applaud this all day long,” says realtor Holly Meyer Lucas. Ninety percent of her business is luxury real estate, the other 10 percent happens leading up to Spring Training-for professional baseball families to find temporary housing.
“Being a baseball wife myself, my husband played for 13 years and now he's a coach, the Spring Training rental is a joke among us baseball wives with how difficult it is to find Spring Training rentals,” she says.
The Astros will be the first baseball organization to offer a team hotel to their players during spring training,-and then open to the public outside of baseball preseason.
The team told the Post the 197 room hotel will be more for minor league players and other staff members, who are generally on a tighter budget-trying to compete with a robust rental market.
“If that's what their intention is, than to me, it's a brilliant move. Nothing hurts my soul more than when I get a minor league guy that's like, ‘hey, my budget is x, y, z, can you help us find something?’ It's like no I can't!" she says.
The hotel is about 5 miles away from their new ballpark set to open soon. The team’s goal to open is 2018, but they admit they’d have to catch a few breaks for that to happen.