Red Lion in downtown Boise is for sale

The Red Lion in downtown is for sale, as are 10 other Red Lions across the Pacific Northwest. Photo by Teya Vitu.

The 182-room Red Lion Hotel Boise Downtowner is for sale, as is the 163-room Red Lion Templin’s Hotel in Post Falls.

The two are among the last 18 hotels that Red Lion Hotels Corp. still owns. More than a 1,000 Red Lion hotels have been franchised off in the past three years, according to a Red Lion news release.

The Boise hotel is among 11 Red Lions in the greater Pacific Northwest that have been listed with CBRE, the Los Angeles-based commercial real estate giant. Red Lion will retain the other seven hotels for now.

The Red Lion has been in place at 1800 Fairview since 2001-02. Previously, that property had a DoubleTree Hotel.

The seven-story, 140,715-square-foot structure was built in 1960 and is assessed at $6.1 million, according to the Ada County Assessor.

The Red Lion is the sixth-largest Boise hotel, soon to be seventh-largest pending the opening of the 185-room Residence Inn Boise Downtown City Center.

The Red Lion is larger than all of the 30-plus hotels recently opened or under construction in Idaho, except the Residence Inn. Its size and the fact that the land underneath is leased could be a stumbling block to finding a buyer, said David Wali, executive vice president at Gardner Company, which is building a Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Boise.

“There are a lot of rooms,” said Wali, part of the investor group that owns 40 percent of the Riverside Hotel, the largest in the Treasure Valley. “When your do 200-room renovations, that’s a lot of money.”

Wali said a year ago he did ask if the Red Lion was available but got no response.

“There isn’t a single piece of downtown real estate I don’t find interesting,” said Wali, who has an ownership share in numerous downtown Boise properties. “I will always look.”

He added there could be one buyer for all 11 Red Lions or they could sell individually. The others are in Salt Lake City; Spokane, Olympia, Pasco, Richland, and Port Angeles, Washington; and Bend, Oregon. There are also two in northern California, in Eureka and Redding.

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