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Business Beat

December 5, 2012

Courtyard hotel anticipating growth in region

Say you want to build a hotel in Oneonta geared toward business travelers.

Do you wait for more development before building? Or do you build now and hope your hotel helps spark more development?

It’s the chicken-or-egg dilemma.

The owners of the new Courtyard by Marriott, just a couple of months from opening on the south side of Oneonta, chose the latter option.

“We’ll built it and encourage business to come,” is how Todd Heyn, the hotel’s sales director, described their decision.

The group, led by Erfan Kahn, has a history of in Otsego County development. It started with the Pit Stop, a small convenience store south of Cooperstown, then built the Holiday Inn Express on Route 28 in Hartwick and bought the old Knott’s Motel, which is now the Red Carpet Inn on the Lake in Milford Town.

They are shooting for a Feb. 7 opening of the four-story, 95-room Courtyard on Route 28.

“It’s going to be a brand-new, modern, technologically enhanced facility,” Heyn said. “Wi-fi throughout the building, oodles of power outlets and charging stations and those kinds of things,” Heyn said. “We will have a small restaurant called The Bistro.”

Marriott markets its Courtyard hotels to business travelers.

“That’s out prime focus, but not our only focus,” Heyn said. “When the owners were looking for what chain to go with, they looked at the competition in the area and stated, ‘What are we missing?’ and what they figured is that what we’re missing is mid- to upper-scale business-class facility, and that’s why they chose to go with the Courtyard by Marriott.”

He pointed out that Oneonta has wealth of midsize businesses, such as Medicoach, Siemens Medical and Custom Electronics, to name just a few.

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