The Ricketts Family Agrees to Build a Hotel on McDonald’s Property … Conditioned on Wrigley Funding

mcdonalds wrigleyAs noted earlier today, the Ricketts Family today announced an agreement with Starwood Hotels (the parent company of Sheraton Hotels, where the Cubs Convention is being held this weekend) to develop a boutique hotel on the McDonald’s property across from Wrigley Field, which property the Ricketts previously purchased.

The development of a hotel in Wrigleyville would come as a welcomed addition to folks who live in that area (as well as out-of-town fans), and has been discussed in the most recent Wrigley renovation plans.

However, development of the hotel (and the neighboring Triangle Property) is contingent on the Cubs first finalizing a funding plan for the renovation of Wrigley Field. In other words, the hotel – among other development ideas for the Wrigleyville area – is a carrot being held out by the Ricketts in order to help generate goodwill and interest in public funding for the Wrigley renovation.

“Once we know how we can save Wrigley Field, the Ricketts Family is looking forward to the opportunity to build a hotel across the street,” family spokesperson Dennis Culloton told the Tribune. “It could complement the neighborhood and its establishments while also serving fans and tourists.”

Help us, and we’ll help you. That’s the message. Of course, owning a profitable hotel in a relatively hotel-less area like Wrigleyville is probably its own reward, but I recognize that it would, indeed, be a good thing for that area. It would also generate more tax dollars for the city.

Since we already know that the hotel was part of the grander renovation plans, which are being announced on Saturday, and since we now know that the hotel is contingent on a Wrigley renovation funding deal, I’m thinking that the funding deal has essentially been agreed to. Otherwise, it would be really bold of the Ricketts to make this announcement, and the Cubs to announced the Wrigley renovation plans on Saturday, given that neither of those things is going to happen until a funding agreement is in place.

Once again I say: Saturday’s reveal should be very interesting.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

46 responses to “The Ricketts Family Agrees to Build a Hotel on McDonald’s Property … Conditioned on Wrigley Funding”

  1. Blublud

    You can complain all you want about the funding, the on field team, the FO, but the one thing you can’t deny is that the Ricketts are some business minded folks.

    1. Featherstone

      You don’t make a few billion dollars in the business world without knowing a thing or two about business. No complaints here as long as they remain true to their goal of bringing a world series home to the North Side.

  2. Beer Baron

    I think this is a goldmine for them. I live relatively near by and when we have guests that need a hotel they either have to go downtown or up to Evanston – very little in between. So they should have plenty of traffic year round. Plus on game days in addition to the hotel traffic, they can make turn it into a beer garden and steel some of the crowd from the local bars (reminds me of Hotel Red in Madison across from Camp Randall).

    1. Corey

      Do you think they’ll make some of the hotel floors for MLB players only?

      1. DarthHater

        No, then none of the Cubs could stay there! [rim shot!]

        1. Corey

          hahahaha.

      2. aCubsFan

        I believe that having a hotel across from Wrigley would be highly beneficial to the visiting teams. So yes, I think they will have some floors set aside during season for the visiting teams.

        And I’d look for them to either have a tunnel under the street, or an overhead walkway, that connects to the triangle building and Wrigley.

        1. DarthHater

          And if there just happened to be e coli in that room service salad the night before a big series, well, that would be a pity . . .

        2. Scotti

          I’m sure the hotel will welcome anyone willing to pay rack rates on game days so, sure, there will be other teams staying there, but building tunnels or sky walks just so VISITING teams can have it easy? Even if the city would sign off (it wouldn’t) that would be an especially bad idea.

    2. Norm

      Day’s Inn on Clark/Diversey?

  3. Corey

    I think it would only be fair if they put the Mcdonald’s they are closing down on the bottom floor of the Hotel.

    1. Cubbie Blues

      They aren’t closing down any McDonald’s. Under the purchase agreement when Ricketts purchased the land there was a clause that whatever is built on that property shall have a McDonald’s in it.

      1. Corey

        Oh, okay then. That’s exactly what I meant. Closing the one that’s there, and moving it to the bottom floor of the hotel.

  4. Cory

    Home of the 2015 Cubs Convention

    1. ozzzie19

      Cubs convention and boutique hotel are polar opposites

  5. Crazyhorse

    Carrot ? or Trojan Horse? I see no problems in the city of Chicago helping out the Cubs and the Ricketts Family trust fund in a Wrigley renovation funding deal. I think most people would back a bond backed proposal to finance the 160 millions dollars the Cubs are asking the City and implement a percentage of a hotel tax or similar to recoup money invested in the venture.

    Trajan Horse – . But If the Ricketts family Trust Fund want special wording that any type of tax dollars once it reaches a certain percent is diverted back to family trust Fund and or Cubs. i consider that robbery and would say no to the Wrigley renovation funding deal.

    1. Featherstone

      You really need to go back and re-read the details on the city funding they are looking to receive.

      1. Crazyhorse

        supply a link.

  6. mudge

    It’s a bad idea to build on a Ricketty foundation.

  7. DarthHater

    An important unanswered question: How is coyote control going to be funded?

    11924456-large.jpg

    1. Cubbie Blues

      991000087.jpg

    2. Beer Baron

      I heard that they’ve outsourced that all to the Acme Co.

      coyote_acme.png

      1. DarthHater

        :-D

      2. DarthHater

        Glad to hear it. I was concerned about rumors that the hyenas and jackals in the FO were interested in hiring the coyotes as consultants…

      3. Frankfort Dave

        That made my day! Well played!

  8. itzscott

    A hotel would be a gold mine regardless of the funding.

    I’d love to know what one has to do with the other in Ricketts’ mind.

    The city has got to be thinking that he should knock his socks out…. he stands to make far more money than he would pay in taxes and funding would have nothing to do with that.

    He doesn’t build it…. he’s the one that loses.

    1. Scotti

      Ricketts isn’t going to commit to building anything (hotel, triangle, restaurants, etc.) until he knows 100% that the Wrigley problems are solved. They spend millions each year just to keep concrete of the heads of paying customers.

      Even a top ticket price, sold-out Wrigley cannot generate the type of revenue needed for a top $ club. There really isn’t room for amenities (parking, numerous skyboxes, restaurants/hotel/office space inside the park) at Wrigley even WITH the renovation. That’s where the renovation, hotel, triangle, restaurants, etc. in the neighborhood come in. But paying for the others before the Wrigley renovation is settled just smacks of stupidity. Not only would the Cubs lose all leverage, but they would also be forced to stay at Wrigley regardless of whether It makes fiscal sense.

  9. Cryinmybluecoolaid

    Since the new hotel is part of the Starwood chain, any chance it will be it a W. Then L on days the Cubs lose. Also I cannot wait to hear the nicknames the hotel will get,like “Lovable Loser Inn”.

  10. Luke D

    No more McDonalds?? :(

    1. DarthHater

      It will be replaced by a Coyote Coffee Cafe. ;-)

  11. Die hard

    Build a team first

    1. Crazyhorse

      then trade that team away.

    2. GoldFinch

      Yep

    3. GoldFinch

      Seems like we are building a team with smoke and mirrors at this point.

  12. Rose

    I’m very much in favor of a Hotel (especially of the Starwood family), but really not in favor of public funding for Wrigley renovations.

    1. Diesel

      In my opinion the city is obligated to either allow the cubs to do what they want by removing the restrictions on Wrigley or they must pay to maintain Wrigley because of it’s landmark status

  13. Carne Harris

    Can’t imagine what the room rates will be there. Wasn’t I reading there’s a Walmart near Wrigley, or one planned or something? Wonder if they’re one of the ones that allow RVs overnight. If so, that might be the route I go.

  14. Westbound Willie

    Lol!

  15. ssckelley

    Great, I look forward to Cub Ticket with hotel packages.

  16. Scotti

    Ricketts isn’t going to commit to building anything (hotel, triangle, restaurants, etc.) until he knows 100% that the Wrigley problems are solved. They spend millions each year just to keep concrete of the heads of paying customers.

    Even a top ticket price, sold-out Wrigley cannot generate the type of revenue needed for a top $ club. There really isn’t room for amenities (parking, numerous skyboxes, restaurants/hotel/office space inside the park) at Wrigley even WITH the renovation. That’s where the renovation, hotel, triangle, restaurants, etc. in the neighborhood come in. But paying for the others before the Wrigley renovation is settled just smacks of stupidity. Not only would the Cubs lose all leverage, but they would also be forced to stay at Wrigley regardless of whether It makes fiscal sense.