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Work starts on new Fairfield Inn

A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Fairfield Inn and Suites takes place Wednesday, Dec. 21. (Contributed)

Visitors and residents alike will have one more choice when deciding where to stay in Alexandria.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott took place last Wednesday, Dec. 21. Construction on the project started Dec. 6.

The three-story hotel, just north of the new Boulder Tap House on Sanibel Drive, will feature 80 rooms, an indoor pool, meeting space, exercise area and breakfast dining space.

"We are excited for Fairfield Inn and Suites to break ground on this catalyst project that will bring more amenities, jobs, out-of-town visitors and business guests to the city of Alexandria," said Nicole Fernholz, executive director of the Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission. "This project is an investment in our community and the perfect complement to our industry needs, including our growing high school activities and the vibrant tourism in and around our area."

The hotel owners, Alexandria Hotel Group, LLC, is bringing Alexandria its first Marriott brand hotel, according to a news release from C.I. Construction, LLC, the construction manager for the project.

The hotel is the second phase of the development that also brought Boulder Tap House to that area. Both properties will share an access off Sanibel Drive. The projects — the restaurant and the hotel — are owned by separate, but similar investment groups with ties to Alexandria.

Rob Thompson from C.I. Properties, who developed the project with JRK Management, said, "It was important to the developers to proceed with the projects standing on their own merit without any public tax dollars. This has been a complex process, but we are proud to add these two businesses to the Alexandria marketplace."

C.I. Construction, which was founded in 1945, will be working with English and Smart Architects and Duffy Engineering. The construction company is a fourth-generation company and since locating to Alexandria in 1989, it has been involved with development, design-build services and construction management.

JRK Management has been in the hotel business since 1974 and has had ownership in more than 50 hotels. John Klinkhammer, JRK member, will be president of the Alexandria Hotel Group.

"I have spent close to five years thinking about the project and now it has become a reality," said Klinkhammer. "I think the national brand recognition of Marriott will be a great asset to the community. Our financial partners in JBK Funding and Bremer Bank in Alexandria have been instrumental in this process and I want to thank them both."

Celeste Edenloff

Celeste is a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press and has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in June 2016 to report on the community she calls home. Besides writing articles for the Echo Press, she has a blog, “Newspaper Girl on the Run.” Celeste is on a continuous healthy living journey and loves to teach bootcamp fitness classes and run. She has participated in more than 200 races with her husband, Al, covering the 5K, 10K, 10-mile and half-marathon (13.1 mile) distances.

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