Blue Flag Acquires The Roberts Collection in Nantucket, Partnering With Life House on Management and Restoration

USA, Nantucket, Massachusetts. May 28, 2019

Local real estate firm Blue Flag Partners ("Blue Flag") has acquired The Roberts Collection, partnering with award-winning Life House hotel group on the management and future restoration of the historic, 58-room boutique hotel. Life House has taken over management of The Roberts Collection through the summer 2019 season, and in partnership with Blue Flag's in-house development, branding and construction teams will debut a transformed lifestyle hotel with multiple food and beverage concepts in the spring of 2020. This is the first collaboration between NYC-based Life House and Blue Flag, which is one of the largest active developers on the island of Nantucket.

Today, The Roberts Collection includes four historic manor houses (the earliest dating back to the 1840s) surrounding an expansive open-air courtyard. Centrally located on India Street in the heart of Nantucket's Historic District, the hotel is in close proximity to the island's many attractions including the ferry landing, dozens of world-class shops, intimate restaurants, and bars that dot the island's refined urban core. Spearheaded by Life House's design team, the hotel will undergo a comprehensive renovation that re-imagines all guestrooms, common areas, the lobby and additional components of the hotel's indoor and outdoor public space. Historic elements of the property will be carefully restored or preserved during the renovation, with Life House honoring a responsive and contextual design rooted in respect for the historic property.

"As Nantucket locals, we are honored for the opportunity to steward a prominent historic property like The Roberts Collection in the heart of downtown," says Blue Flag Co-Founder Terry Sanford. "We've found a perfect partner in Life House as we plan to pay homage to the property and the island's roots while re-imagining the experience for guests and neighbors in a capacity that is both familiar and refreshing."

"We're thrilled to be working with the Blue Flag team and The Roberts Collection is a tremendous opportunity for us to further demonstrate our advanced hotel operations platform while reimagining a beautifully historic hotel through a locally contextual lens," explained Life House CEO and Founder Rami Zeidan. "This will be our first of many projects in New England and we're actively seeking opportunities to acquire, brand and operate other hotels in primary and secondary urban and resort markets throughout the region."

"We have confidence that Life House's technology-enabled, vertically integrated platform is the key to maximizing investment value in highly seasonal markets like Nantucket. Along with their responsive approach to branding and design, Life House is able to deliver strong returns without sacrificing the authentic sense of place that properties in these incredible destinations deserve," said Jason Brown, a Partner at Blue Flag.

Life House will leverage their white-label platform - a brand-agnostic management offering designed to improve operations and enhance experience on behalf of independent hotel owners prior to re-investing into the physical asset - to operate The Roberts Collection through the remainder of 2019.

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Revenue Management: Focus On Profit

Revenue Management is still a relatively new profession within hotel operations and as such, it continues to evolve. One significant trend in this area is a shift away from using revenue as the foundation to generate key performance indicators (KPIs) and to instead place the emphasis on profit. Traditionally, revenue managers have relied on total revenue per available room (TrevPAR) and revenue per available room (RevPAR) as the basis of their KPIs. Now, some revenue managers are using gross operating profit per available room (GOPPAR) as their primary KPI. This puts profit at the center of revenue management strategy, and managers are increasingly searching for new ways to increase the profitability of their hotels. Return on Investment is the objective of any hotel investment, so it is only logical that profitability and ROI will be emphasized going forward. Another trend is an expanded focus on direct hotel bookings. Revenue managers know that one way to increase profitability is to steer guests away from online travel agencies (OTAs) and book directly with the hotel. This tactic also reinforces brand identity and loyalty, and encourages repeat business. In addition, it provides a valuable platform to market the hotel directly to the customer, and to upsell room upgrades or other services to them. Another trend for revenue managers involves automation in their software programs. Revenue management systems with automation are far more desirable than those without it. Automating data entry and logistics increases efficiency, allowing managers to spend more time on formulating strategy. As a bonus, an automated system helps with aggregating and interpreting data. The October issue of the Hotel Business Review will address these developments and document how some leading hotels are executing their revenue management strategies.