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Vikings owners plan luxury hotel near new HQ

Undated courtesy rendering, circa Sept. 2018, of a proposed 320-room hotel to be built northeast of the Minnesota Vikings' headquarters and practice facility in Eagan. MV Eagan Ventures, a real estate arm of Vikings owners Zygi, Mark and Leonard Wilf, has submitted plans for a “four-star” hotel and conference center that would have a Scandinavian theme and rise 14 stories. Courtesy of the Minnesota Vikings

EAGAN, Minn. — MV Eagan Ventures, a real estate arm of Minnesota Vikings owners Zygi, Mark and Leonard Wilf, has submitted to Eagan plans for a "luxurious" hotel and conference center that would have a Scandinavian theme and rise 14 stories northeast of the team's new headquarters and practice facility.

The hotel would have approximately 320 rooms and suites ranging in size up to 2,000 square feet, according to a development application submitted this week. It would also offer up 18,000 square feet of meeting space — a number not found under one roof in the south metro, team officials say.

"We will offer state-of-the-art facilities, a welcoming service culture and amenities and experiences that will be unique to the Twin Cities' hotel market," the application reads. "Guest rooms and suites will be luxurious, featuring an 'American Nordic' design based on the clean, modern aesthetic of Scandinavia."

Other planned amenities include a 9,400-square-foot restaurant; lobby bar; a second-level rooftop bar and deck; resort-style spa; indoor pool; state-of-the-art fitness center; retail shops; and approximately 105 underground parking stalls.

Kevin Warren, the team's chief operating officer, said Wednesday the hotel project is a continuation of MV Eagan Ventures' plan for its 167 acres — south of Interstate 494 and east of Dodd Road — that got underway last year with a Twin Cities Orthopedics medical office building.

"We think this will further establish Eagan as a destination for people to stay," Warren said, "for those who have business in Eagan, but also for those who have business in the downtowns of Minneapolis or St. Paul or who want to stay (near) the Mall of America."

Don Becker, a project executive for MV Eagan Ventures, said they have not decided whether to partner with a hotel brand or to run the hotel independently.

Other plans to develop the rest of the land — called Viking Lakes — include residential, retail, office and medical space to join sponsor Twin Cities Orthopedics, which has about 10 acres of the parcel.

The team owns the adjacent 33-acre site that has Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center, a sparkling, 277,000-square-foot headquarters and indoor and outdoor practice facility that this summer hosted training camp for the first time.

The number of hotel rooms — and the height of the building to accommodate them — comes from market research the team completed before submitting initial development plans back in 2016, Becker said.

The initial plan approved by the Eagan City Council two years ago does not specify a building height — just a range of the number of rooms — "although the presumption is a hotel with that number of rooms is not spread out on three levels ... a hotel of that size is a multiple-story building," Becker said.

If the council approves the project in the next few months, ground can be broken by the end of the year and the hotel can open for the team's 2020 training camp, Becker said.

Brent Cory, president and CEO of the Eagan Convention & Visitors Bureau, said the city currently has 16 hotels with 1,763 rooms, and the occupancy rate typically hovers around 70 percent.

The proposed hotel and conference center would enable the bureau to target larger meetings, events and tournaments, Cory said.

"Consequently, all our hotels will benefit from the additional business," he said, "enabling us to create an even larger economic impact for Eagan and our region."