Committee Recommends Omni to Operate the Convention Center Hotel

Omni beat out Marriott, which was the only other hotel to submit a proposal. How close was it? Who knows, since “Dallas City Hall is not publicly releasing specific deal points or financial numbers related to negotiations with either Omni or Marriott. The city is also not releasing either of the companies’ operation proposals.” Also, three members of the council — Carolyn Davis, Dave Neumann, and Steve Salazar — are unhappy with the choice, and said if the final full council vote were held today and not in January, they’d vote no.

Expect this all to get plenty more wheels-off in the coming months. That tends to happen when you make things harder for yourself at every turn, which seems to be the goal here for Mayor Leppert. Continuing to conduct every important part of the process behind closed doors will only guarantee that remains the case. At this point, Leppert might as well sit on Schutze’s porch and flip him the double bird. Not much of this deal makes sense, and I don’t see that changing.

UPDATE: A same-office-working FBvian reminded me of this column by Wick, which I should have remembered in the first place.


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11 responses to “Committee Recommends Omni to Operate the Convention Center Hotel”

  1. James says:

    Good for Omni, I’m happy for the local guys!!! As for Davis, Neumann and Salazar- just sour grapes. Either way someone on the council was not going to be happy- had Marriott got the nod a few council members who wanted Omni would be upset too. That’s just the way things go!

  2. brett says:

    I’m far from versed in matters such as this…but shouldn’t there be more than just 2 hotels bidding to operate such a “crown jewel” of Dallas???

    Maybe all the other hotel operators know something Leppert’s minions don’t…

  3. CV Gilkeson says:

    Omni is not a conventions business player – Marriott is. The other hotel chains with significant national convention sales forces already have properties in the area and are likely contractually precluded from being in on this one. Bad decision for a bad project.

  4. Big Tex says:

    Wait, isnt this the one company that doesnt provide in room porn in the hotel biz?

    Geez that dooms the project right there guys!!!!

  5. Mark says:

    Where the f*** is our Injunction Harlan? Stop this madness now.

  6. James says:

    Some of you guys are obviously not familiar with Omni… These guys run some pretty big hotels, they do run a few other CC Hotels and even have some kick ace golf resorts across the country. They have a loyal following and are known as more upscale than Marriott. I actually prefer Omni, and I think choosing Omni gives Dallas an advantage. Why do we want what everyone else has?

    Besides, bringing in conventions will not be the responsibility of Omni- that will be the part of the DCVB!

  7. Pat says:

    Bummer. I was hoping city would do the hiring so we can turn this into another patronage machine.

  8. Wylie H. says:

    There’s really no consistency to the Omni product– some are good, some aren’t. The Omni brand was (I believe) started so that the company (which owns a fair number of the hotels branded as Omni), wouldn’t have to pay a third party management fees.

    Their third-party management business tends to come from properties that may not meet the strict standards of other chains and/or where the owners want more flexibility to get out of the agreement at a later date.

    In any case, with less than 40 hotels in the entire world, they are hardly a major player and definitely aren’t large enough to have a devoted clientele.

    That being said, being a local brand means they know how to do business with the City of Dallas– if you wanna play, you gotta pay. I expect the prospects of meaningful political contributions from Omni folks are significantly greater than they were from Marriott execs in Bethesda.

    It’s still unclear to me why they are just giving such a lucrative long-term management contract away for free. They should have been able to get Omni to invest risk capital in the project alongside the City of Dallas– this is how San Antonio structured their deal.

  9. Big Tex says:

    But what about the porn guys??? Come on …

  10. Ben says:

    I think since plenty of hotels are directly linked to the CC by DART the whole thing is unnecessary.

  11. I came from the extra rib says:

    Once again our increasingly appearing corrupt mayor has not realized that Dallas is not an ideal convention venue (think smoking and the anti-strip club tact).Mark my words, the taxplayers will be swallowing the whole hog by 2015 if this BS sneaks through.