JULIE FONDRIEST FOUNDED Historic Key West Inns in Florida in 1997, starting with a small guest house. This month, Fondriest and her investment partners made even more history when they sold their collection of six small inns to a private equity firm for $109 million.
KHP Capital Partners of San Francisco acquired Historic Key West Inns, which includes the Key Lime Inn, Lighthouse Court, Albury Court, Merlin Inn, Chelsea House, Cypress House and associated office buildings and parking lots. Together, the properties total 212 rooms.
Historic Key West Inns has more than 100 employees.
KHP Capital Partners invests in premium boutique and independent hotels across North America. Managing partners are Mike Depatie, Joe Long and Ben Rowe.
Brokers Claude Gardner and Will Langley, owners of Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Knight & Gardner Realty, handled the sale. The brokerage, founded in 1957, is Key West’s oldest real estate company.
The brokers said in a news release the deal is the largest commercial real estate transaction in Key West history. However, the Miami Herald reports the sale of the 260-room Southernmost Hotel Collection in 2013 was $184.5 million.
Still, the county appraiser’s office said the price per key for Historic Key West’s small cottages and inns is unusual.
It has been nearly a year since Hurricane Irma hit the Keys. Since then, 96 percent of Key West hotels have reopened, a spokesman for the Monroe County Tourist Development Council told Globe St.
Hersha Hospitality Trust, headed by Jay Shah and Neil Shah, acquired the Parrot Key Hotel & Resort in 2014 for $100 million. Hurricane Irma damaged the 148-room property, which Hersha expects to reopen in the third quarter of this year.