An integral part of Downtown Albuquerque’s skyline, the Hotel Andaluz was purchased by former owner Gary Goodman earlier this month.
The historic hotel was purchased by Legacy Hospitality, which now owns four Hilton properties in Albuquerque and one in Santa Fe.
“Given the history of this hotel, I think it’s really important that we keep this product alive,” said Todd Walters, vice president of operations at Legacy Hospitality.
According to Walters, developer Goodman — founder and CEO of Goodman Realty Group — wanted to focus on other projects in the city. Walters did not provide any information about the purchase price.
“It was time to hand it to a new generation of people in hospitality,” said Phil Snyder, senior vice president of finance at Goodman Realty Group.
Snyder said the company is focused on developments at Winrock Town Center, including a new park, food hall, bar and boutique hotel. Proceeds from the sale, Snyder said, will be invested in other hospitality projects in Albuquerque.
The Hotel Andaluz was built in 1939 — the fourth hotel ever built by New Mexico-born businessman Conrad Hilton, founder of the Hilton hotel chain, according to Walters. When it was built, it cost $700,000 and, at ten stories, was the tallest building in New Mexico — and the first building in the state with air conditioning, according to the Hotel Andaluz website.
During the latter half of the 20th century, the hotel was sold several times before being bought by Albuquerque developer Goodman in 2005 for $4 million. He renamed the property Hotel Andaluz in 2008, and in 2019 the hotel became a Hilton again as part of the Curio Collection, which supports hotels financially but allows them to operate independently.
“It was pretty nice to see it come back into the family 80 years later,” Snyder said.
Snyder said when Hotel Andaluz switched back to Hilton and emerged from the pandemic, the hotel posted record profits.
“We’ve seen demand like never before,” Snyder said. “That made it very attractive … for someone to invest in.”
Snyder said he felt the new owners would carry on the hotel’s legacy.
“You don’t make these kinds of investments unless you really want to make something special out of them,” Snyder said.
Walters said the Hotel Andaluz property could benefit the surrounding town.
“Having a luxury boutique hotel in Albuquerque is fabulous. It’s great for the city,” Walters said. “We know downtown’s struggles with homelessness, crime. … We also know the value of such a flag. It’s good for Albuquerque to have some luxury.”
Walters said Legacy Hospitality plans to spend multi-million dollars on renovations over the next 18 to 24 months. He said there has been some wear and tear at the hotel over the past few decades in business. Renovations are already underway after Legacy Hospitality took over the hotel on November 2nd. Future changes include updates to restaurant and bar amenities, a new brand strategy, and the addition of an on-site fitness center. Hotel Andaluz is currently collaborating with the nearby Downtown Sports & Wellness site.
But some things will remain the same.
“The Andaluz name will of course remain,” said Walters.