by Max Brantley
The D-G this morning followed up on a report by Arkansas Business that the closure of the Majestic Hotel in Hot Springs was in the offing.
We can provide more details. The closure date, accordng to our sources, is pegged at Oct. 20, though it could be extended depending on the timetable for the new development. We'd written last year about plans to tear down a part of the existing structure to convert the old place into a "boutique hotel." That plan has apparently fallen by the wayside.
The new idea, not yet fully nailed down, is a sale to Little Rock investors for conversion of the hotel into a condo project, with some commercial elements, likely retail/restaurant. The idea is to replicate the River Market living experience in Hot Springs. There's even talk of a deluxe Asian-style spa, relying on the famous local waters. There could be some state participation in the deal in the form of bond financing. Some of the old structure would come down in the process, including the unlamented Lanai addition added in the 1950s.