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Hyatt Place in Niagara Falls headed for early 2018 opening

The $35 million Hyatt Place Hotel in downtown Niagara Falls is on target to open in early 2018, developer Hamister Group said Monday.

The six-story hotel, which has been controversial because of the state subsidies paid to the developer, will include 128 rooms, 6,600 square feet of meeting and banquet space on the top floor, and 7,000 feet of retail space on the ground floor at Rainbow Boulevard and Old Falls Street.

The last steel beam was installed Oct. 20, Hamister spokesman Kevin Keenan said, and work is under way on the roof and the interior.

The hotel is expected to provide the equivalent of 35 full-time jobs.

“We are excited to introduce the Hyatt Place brand to Niagara Falls,” said Mark E. Hamister, chairman and CEO of Hamister Group.  “The Hyatt flag is well-respected in the Pacific Rim, where we anticipate a good deal of our business will originate."

Daniel Hamister, executive vice president and chief investment officer, said the project demonstrates the company's "belief in Niagara Falls."

“We are confident in the future of Niagara Falls, and that is why we committed to building and opening this hotel,” Daniel Hamister said.

Ground was broken in July 2016, after three years of delays that ended with Goldman Sachs, the Wall Street investment banking firm, providing $25 million in financing. The groundbreaking occurred less than four months after state officials publicly warned that the project could be canceled if it didn't start in 2016.

Hamister received a $3.85 million grant from USA Niagara Development Corp., the local arm of Empire State Development. The project also received a 10-year property and sales tax break from the Niagara County Industrial Development Agency, saving Hamister Group an estimated $4.25 million.

The site was formerly owned by the City of Niagara Falls. In 2013, the City Council voted 3-2 to sell it to Hamister for $100,000, after members were pressured by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

R&P Oak Hill Development of Blasdell is general contractor for the project.

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