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Downtown Iowa City hotels changing hands


Photo by Jordan Sellergren

RBD Iowa LLC, owner of the Sheraton hotel in Iowa City, is in the process of negotiating a sale to AJ Capital Partners, owner of Graduate Hotels. The hotel, rebranded as Graduate Iowa City, is expected to be open for business by the summer of 2018. The Sheraton currently runs the neighboring hotelVetro, which will be run by Graduate as well once the sale is complete.

Renovations may include an update to the exterior as well as the interior of the building that currently houses the Sheraton, according to an employee who did not want to be named. The number of rooms is likely to remain the same, but Graduate Hotels’ designs tend to have a more boutique, eclectic feel than the Sheraton’s current design. The transaction should be finalized in June, at which time more details will be made available.

Hotel Vetro will also change hands. — photo by Jordan Sellergren

The Iowa City Sheraton was originally a Holiday Inn built in 1984. Two decades later, hotelVetro joined the block housed in the Moen Group’s Plaza Towers building.

The Plaza Towers building also includes residential units, many of which are condos that have been purchased by residents, as well as businesses like the Bread Garden, Heartland Yoga and Formosa which have also purchased the spaces in which they are housed. Nothing in that building will be affected by the sale except hotelVetro, which will not be renovated, according to building owner Marc Moen.

Sheraton and hotelVetro general manager Stephen Smyka and a designer for the new renovation declined to comment for this story. Little Village also reached out to both RBD Iowa LLC and AJ Capital Partners but had not received a response at the time of publication.


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