By: Dale King Special to the Boca and Delray newspapers
Boca Raton-based Bluegreen Vacations Corporation, a major player in the timeshare ownership market, has acquired The Éilan Hotel and Spa in San Antonio for about $34.3 million as it moves to secure properties in the western United States.
“This acquisition reflects our ability to identify attractive opportunities in key markets aligned with our western expansion initiatives, and is an important addition to our resort portfolio,” said Bluegreen Vacations CEO Shawn B. Pearson.
He said most of the firm’s current destinations are in the Eastern and Midwestern United States. It also has vacation destinations in Aruba and the Bahamas.
Located off Yamato Road on the Boca Raton Innovation Campus (BRIC) in a 1.7 million square foot building it shares with other firms, Bluegreen markets and sells vacation ownership interests and manages resorts in high-end leisure and urban destinations.
“The Éilan Hotel and Spa property is consistent with our ‘drive-to’ resort strategy [as more than] 10% of current Bluegreen Vacation Club owners live in Texas and its surrounding states.”
The Bluegreen Vacation Club is a flexible, points-based, deeded vacation ownership plan with some 213,000 owners, 67 Club and Club Associate Resorts and access to more than 11,000 other hotels and resorts through partnerships and exchange networks.
Bluegreen is 90 percent owned by BBX Capital Corporation, a diversified holding company located in Fort Lauderdale.
The Éilan Hotel & Spa is a 165-room, boutique hotel featuring a 10-treatment-room spa, resort-style pools, fitness center, tennis courts and virtual golf. Guests are welcomed by Roman arches, modern art and Italian-inspired grounds close to the shopping, dining and entertaining districts of the city.
The Éilan is also near the San Antonio Museum of Art, which features a collection of both western and eastern art history. Texas wine country, the second fastest growing wine region in the United States, as well as Six Flags theme park, the 36-hole La Cantera Golf Club, The Rim (Bass Pro site) Shops at La Cantera and Top Golf are also a short distance away.
The resort is located within a 120-acre, mixed-use development, nested within the foothills of the Texas hill country, about 20 miles from downtown San Antonio. Attractions located close by include The Alamo and River Walk, a public park spanning five miles along the San Antonio River, lined with shops and restaurants, offering more than 20 special events throughout the year.
Bluegreen plans to add a 13,000-square-foot sales office at the resort by year’s end, which Bluegreen believes will expand its footprint for new business prospects and owner growth. The acquisition further leverages Bluegreen’s existing marketing platforms, which include the seven Bass Pro Shops located in Texas, as well as its recently extended relationship with Choice Hotels.
ZB N.A., doing business as National Bank of Arizona, is providing up to $27.5 million of financing, $24.3 million at closing for the acquisition of the resort and up to an additional $3.2 million to fund certain future improvement costs.