Camalier family, Ocean Properties announce partnership to build Old Naples Hotel

Laura Layden
Naples Daily News

The Old Naples Hotel project has sprung back to life.

The Camalier family has announced a partnership with Ocean Properties Hotels & Resorts and its affiliates to build and operate the luxury hotel on Third Street South.

Ocean Properties is one of the largest hotel owners and operators in Florida. Most of its properties are owned and run by descendants of the brand’s patriarch Tom Walsh.

The company's extensive holdings include several Four Diamond resorts in South Florida and the Sunset Key Cottages in Key West.

According to its website, Ocean Properties' portfolio consists of more than 125 hotels, with more than 19,000 rooms in more than 15 states.

Complications arising out of the coronavirus pandemic delayed construction of the new "Old Naples Hotel."

The planned hotel is reminiscent of the historic Naples Hotel, incorporating its iconic cupola and inviting nature in its detailed design. 

A rendering of the Old Naples Hotel planned for Third Street South.

The former hotel opened in 1889 and operated for nearly 90 years. Sitting just 600 feet from the pier, it served as a welcoming beacon to early visitors arriving by boat to the small town.

City Council approved the redevelopment project in May 2018.

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The new hotel will replace the long-vacant Third Street Plaza at Broad Avenue and Gordon Drive, demolished last year.

The plaza had become an eyesore for the city.

A view of Third Street Plaza at Broad Avenue and Gordon Drive before it was demolished to make way for the Old Naples Hotel in the downtown district.

Designed to complement the historic Third Street District, the boutique hotel will have 109 rooms, with a host of amenities, open to guests and the neighborhood.

Amenities will include a café/bar with outdoor dining, a picturesque courtyard, a hotel sundry shop and a spa, as well as a small retail spot on Third Street South.

The Old Naples Hotel is moving ahead. It will replace the Third Street Plaza, demolished last year.

Construction is expected to begin in fall 2022, with completion slated for early 2024.

The architects, Hart Howerton, based in New York and San Francisco, made changes to the original project to address neighborhood concerns. Revisions included reducing the number of hotel rooms, down from the initial 118, to minimize the development's impact on nearby residents — and the small-town charm of the Third Street District.

Tim McCarthy, architect for Hart Howerton, presents plans on Old Naples Hotel in a pop-up shop at Third Street Plaza.

Previously:

Old Naples Hotel proposal for Third Street heads for final vote, with sentiments split

Naples City Council approves Old Naples Hotel project

In a statement, Anne D. Camalier, one of the property's owners, said: “We look forward to bringing the Old Naples Hotel to life in partnership with Ocean Properties. This new luxury destination will undoubtedly become a favorite of visitors to Naples, as well as neighbors throughout the community who can enjoy the beautiful courtyard and gardens."

She added: "We are excited for the hotel to become a vibrant part of the Third Street District, while reinforcing the historical and cultural heritage of Old Naples itself.”

The Camaliers plan to retain ownership of the property.

Naples residents since 1964, the family has owned significant real estate in the Third Street shopping district and elsewhere in the city for decades. 

Rendering of Old Naples Hotel in downtown Naples. View from the courtyard.

In a statement, Patrick Walsh, a Naples resident and principal at Ocean Properties Hotels & Resorts, said his family's strong ties to Southwest Florida make the redevelopment project "a very special opportunity for us." 

"We look forward to the partnership with the Camalier family and to bringing forward an exceptional experience at the Old Naples Hotel," he said.

Next steps will include completing the construction documents and submitting them to the city for final approval.

A building permit must still be processed and issued by the city.