A long-awaited boutique hotel is one of several new businesses in the Columbia Point area of Richland.
Ground could finally be broken next month on the Lodge at Columbia Point, overlooking the Columbia River, one of its developers said.
The hotel first filed environmental permits in 2007, but the recession made raising money difficult, said Tom Drumheller.
“We’ve been raising money, and we’ve got our finances, but nothing is easy,” he said.
They will try to start excavation on the site at 530 Columbia Point Drive in May, Drumheller said. The four-story hotel should open about a year later.
The wait has given Drumheller, CEO of Escape Lodging in Cannon Beach, Ore., and partner Bob Naito of Portland, time to make the hotel even better, Drumheller said. Many of the improvements involve the area’s wine industry.
Each of the Lodge at Columbia Point’s 82 guest rooms will be named for an area winery, Drumheller said. It will have wine-themed social gatherings, some with chefs brought in from different cities to pair the wine with gourmet meals.
“I think it’s getting better and better,” he said.
The hotel’s rooms will have vaulted ceilings on the upper floor, similar to those at the Ocean Lodge in Cannon Beach, which Drumheller also developed, he said. The hotel will be unique for the area, with rooms priced between $169 and $300 a night.
“We’re going to be just a little bit higher, but have nicer amenities,” he said.
Some features in the hotel are still being designed, including furniture and carpet inside the rooms and in the lobby, Drumheller said.
The hotel, which will be built between the existing Anthony’s Restaurant and Courtyard by Marriott hotel, is one of several businesses in long-term leases with the city of Richland in the riverfront area. Brian Moore, Richland’s redevelopment project supervisor, said some run into the 22nd century.
“The riverfront is one of the key assets for the city of Richland,” Moore said. “We would like to highlight the jewel of the Columbia River that runs through downtown.”
Also nearing construction is LuLu’s Columbia Point Restaurant, which will be just to the east of Anthony’s. It will be owned by Cindy Goulet, the owner of Florentyna’s, which operates an Italian eatery and the 3 Eyed Fish wine bar at Tri-Cities Regional Airport in Pasco, as well as a second 3 Eyed Fish on Keene Road in Richland. She has said Lulu’s menu will be constructed around a farm-to-table concept that would utilize local ingredients.
Construction on the 7,500-square-foot LuLu’s will require the city to close the southern end of Columbia Point Marina Park, according to a city news release. The closure will impact the recreational vehicle dumping station, with “minimal” impact on vehicle and boat trailer parking.
The restaurant is scheduled to open in spring 2016, the city said.
Budd’s Broiler, a steakhouse owned by Anthony’s, is scheduled to open later this spring at 450 Columbia Point Drive near the Courtyard hotel. Workers were installing electrical features this week in the building, which used to be Anthony’s banquet and event center.
Budd’s Broiler will be a comfortable steakhouse serving premium Northwest beef, Anthony’s has said. Its menu also will include selections of Anthony’s seafood, local in-season produce, Washington wines, beer and hand-crafted cocktails.