No More Condos, New North Building Has a New Plan: Airbnb-Style Hotel

If you were worried that you wouldn’t be able to afford to lay your head in the swishy new luxury condominium building planned for 61 West Erie Street, there’s good news.  You may be able to pay by the day.

September 2019 rendering of 61 West Erie. (via the Office of Alderman Brendan Reilly.)
September 2019 rendering of 61 West Erie. (via the Office of Alderman Brendan Reilly.)

According to 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly, LG Development has ditched its plan to put up a 12-story residential block, and is instead going for a five-story boutique hotel experience.

The hotel may fly the Sonder flag, but a deal has not been signed yet.  If you’re not familiar with that brand, then you haven’t been hanging around grad schools in Montréal enough.  The Sonder business model is to combine the consistency and quality of a hotel with the look and feel of an Airbnb.  The company’s CEO describes it as “alternative hospitality.” Trés disruptive.

If it moves forward, Sonder intends to operate the property as a fully licensed hotel. Sonder spokeswoman Katie Brownstein says, “we pay all local/state taxes for hotel operators as regulated. We comply with all regulations (zoning, taxes, etc) in each market we operate in, and we employ teams and contractors on the ground in each market we have property in, from real estate and operations teams, to hospitality agents, to cleaning and maintenance services.”

Sonder already operates a fleet of condos from the Prairie Avenue District to Wrigleyville, offering them as vacation rentals.  This building being developed by LG appears to be its first full VRBO-style building in Chicago, and is expected to have 29 units.

The former 61 West Erie plan.  Erase this from your mind.
The former 61 West Erie plan. Erase this from your mind.

Location: 61 West Erie Street, Near North Side

Editor

Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at chicagoarchitectureinfo@gmail.com.

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