Negotiations continue for sale of St. James Hotel

Published 1:19 pm Thursday, January 10, 2019

Negotiation for the sale of the St. James Hotel will continue until the end of January, according to Selma City Council President Corey Bowie.

On Nov. 13, Selma City Council approved a resolution to extend the original agreement of the St. James Hotel to 60 days because of a $10,000 title survey the Hilton Franchise, LLC requested on Nov. 13. Bowie said negotiation will culminate by Jan. 31.

Rhaglan Hospitality, LLC, based in Birmingham, plans to purchase the St. James Hotel and renovate it. In November, the council also passed two ordinances for sale of the property and lease of Phoenix Park as a parking space.

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The American South Real Estate Fund LP (ASREF) has prepared to loan $2,533,200 for Rhalgan to buy the hotel, located at 1200 Water Ave. and the Dallas Seed Building Property, located at 1224 Water Ave.

The budget presented by Rhaglan during the loan application broke down their budget for plans on the hotel. That includes a $400,000 purchase price for the land and $82,000 for architectural, electrical, mechanical and interior work. The projected investment will be around $74,000 per room in the 42-room hotel.

Multiple attempts were made to Selma attorney Harry Gamble, who has been involved with the hotel negotiations, but he couldn’t be reached for comment. Jim Lewis is the Chief Executive Officer for Rhaglan and ASREF.

Bowie said purchase of the St. James Hotel will help revive the Queen city. The St. James Hotel was built in 1837, with the last renovations completed in 1997.

“The St. James Hotel is the hub of the redevelopment of downtown Selma,” Bowie said.

City Councilwoman Susan Youngblood said the St. James Hotel will be a financial boon for Selma.

“It will be a ton of money going into Selma,” Youngblood said. “We’re excited about it. Jim Lewis is anxious to get the deal done.”