Mr. Vijay Mahida plans to select a site in 2014 for a 100-room, $9 million hotel, with opening targeted for late 2015, or early 2016. Mr. Mahida, who has a long record of successfully operating under the Comfort Inn & Suites flag, was recently granted the exclusive Comfort franchise for a new hotel in the heart of the Berkshires. With both existing Comfort Inn hotels exiting the system in 2014, Mahida saw an opportunity to become the only Comfort Inn & Suites in the Berkshires.
"My ten years of experience with the Comfort brand has taught me that visitors to the Berkshires appreciate the opportunity to get quality lodging for less than that charged by the market leaders," said Mr. Mahida. The combination of a convenient location, Comfort quality, and Comfort value will be a winner with both business and leisure travelers to the area.
Mahida reports that he is actively considering sites in both Lenox and Pittsfield with the most likely location being somewhere along Rt. 7. "The choice of towns will be a difficult one" said Mahida, who has development experience with both Pittsfield and Lenox. "The City of Pittsfield has been wonderfully supportive of my building the 95 key Hilton Garden Inn in Pittsfield. Lenox, on the other hand, turned down my proposed Courtyard project in 2006, but I believe that my experience in Lenox was valuable to my better understanding the concerns of the community, and I now will be prepared to present a design that Lenox will embrace."
The Berkshires are currently experiencing some welcome upgrading of the quality of its lodging, at all price points. Besides Mahida's Hilton Garden Inn, and this Comfort Inn, a Marriott Courtyard has just started the traditionally lengthy review process in Lenox. In addition, upscale historical lodging properties in Stockbridge and Lenox have expansion plans underway. With over 4,500 lodging rooms in the Berkshires, these quality additions will position the Berkshires to better compete against the likes of Saratoga Springs NY, Lake George NY, and top New England vacation destinations.
For over 100 years, the Berkshires have been an attractive year round, drive-to destination for vacationers and second home owners from the greater New York area, as well as from Boston. With a wide range of cultural and outdoor activities, the Berkshires have long delighted both children and parents with its quaint towns and abundant choices for visitors.
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