Two developers have signed a purchase-and-sale agreement to buy the former Portland Press Herald Building at 390 Congress St. The building is near the historic Old Port District and across the street from City Hall.
Jim Brady, former president of the Olympia Cos., and Kevin Bunker, a downtown redevelopment advocate and developer, plan to convert the now-gutted building into a 100-room boutique hotel with a first-floor restaurant, according to Portland Press Herald. The two are buying the building from John Cacoulidis, president of Grand Metro Builders of New York Corp., who purchased it and the newspaper's printing plant for $6.2 million in 2009 from parent company MaineToday Media Inc., and initially had planned to renovate the building into office space.
The developers said they plan to begin construction in the spring of 2013 and be open for business a year later, the newspaper reported.
Brady told the newspaper that the Portland market is strong, and that there will be adequate demand for a new boutique hotel – notwithstanding the proposed $105 million hotel, restaurant and event center on Thompson's Point approved by the planning board in June.