Mesa has a history of attracting low-budget motels, but that trend is about to change.
Two Marriotts are being proposed along U.S. 60 near the southwest corner of Crismon Road and Hampton Avenue, which, if eventually approved, would be within walking distance of the Mountain Vista Medical Center now under construction.
The Springhill Suites Marriott and the Residence Inn Marriott would likely serve as a place for the families of hospital patients to stay while loved ones undergo medical procedures, said developer Suky Khangura of Tucson-based Khangura Developments.
This is the second recent proposal to build a Marriott hotel in east Mesa. There are also plans to build a Marriott Courtyard at Falcon Field that will likely be used by Boeing employees. If these projects come to fruition, they would become the first hotels built in east Mesa in a generation, according to the Mesa Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.
Khangura said his company wants to build a six-story Springhill Suites with 134 rooms and meeting space. The Residence Inn — an extended stay hotel — would stand between four and six stories tall with 124 rooms. The project would cost around $40 million to complete.
Neither hotel would offer a restaurant, but there would be a cooked breakfast available, free Internet access and a shop where guests can buy pizza or ice cream.
There’s been a big push by the city and the convention and visitor’s bureau to lure higher-end hotels to the city, said the bureau’s executive director Robert Brinton. The effort began about 10 years ago after a bureau-commissioned study found Mesa was attracting mostly low-end budget motels, Brinton said.
“When we looked at travel guides like Fodor’s and Frommer’s, what they were saying is that Mesa is not really a destination,” Brinton said.
This is not the first time Khangura’s family firm has been involved with hotel development in Mesa. In 1982, the company built the Holiday Inn on U.S. 60 and Country Club Drive, said L.J. Benjamin, the operations manager for the company.
“In 1982, that was a whole new area,” Benjamin said. “At the time, Country Club was the end of the freeway.”
Now, he said, east Mesa is the new hot spot, with a lot of growth in health care and industrial development.
Kim Steadman, a senior planner for the city, said zoning for the 5-acre site of the proposed Marriotts allows for the development of hotels, but the company will have to seek exceptions for height.
He will have a preliminary meeting with the developers Feb. 26.