The George Washington University has retained Savills, a commercial property advisory firm, to assist the university as it seeks a real estate investor or developer to either enter into a long-term ground lease or purchase the property that GW currently owns at One Washington Circle.
The property, which GW has owned since 2001, has operated as a hotel called One Washington Circle Hotel until this past August when the university moved in third- and fourth-year students as part of an agreement to house undergraduate students in residential campus housing while Thurston Hall is being renovated.
Historically, the building and the land underneath has been owned by GW and operated by a third-party property management company, most recently Modus Hotels, as an investment property. The university’s investment properties generate revenue for academic priorities.
The timing of a completed transaction will depend on the interest of the market and the quality of the offers received with the goal of completing this real estate transaction by summer 2022. This will enable the students who are currently living in this property to remain through the end of the current academic year.
The purchaser (or ground lessee) will determine any plans regarding the future use or re-development for the property.
"The One Washington Circle hotel has been a valuable investment for the university for many years, but it is not core to our academic mission," said Bruno Fernandes, vice president of finance and treasurer. "The current state of the capital markets and the demand for multifamily and hotel properties in Washington, D.C. renders this a perfect time to market the property and explore a sale or ground lease of this asset in support of our broader academic goals."