Burgans Block Redevelopment - Ruby Suites

Thursday, May 14, 2015

(As reported in Spokane Journal of Business)

Ruby Suites, a new extended-stay hotel, has opened one building in its complex on the former Burgans Block north of downtown, and the other building is expected to open next month.

The four-story north building, which is the larger of the two buildings at 1120 N. Division, is operating with 30 suites, says Jerry Dicker, owner of Spokane-based GVD Commercial Properties Inc., which is developing Ruby Suites through affiliate Burgans Block LLC.

The south building will have 16 units and two restaurants, Dicker says.

The Ruby Suites complex is the culmination of a $6.8 million renovation of the former Burgan’s Fine Furniture store and an adjacent warehouse on the block bordered by Division to the west, Ruby Street to the east, Boone Avenue to the north, and Desmet Avenue to the south.

Mauer Construction Inc., of Spokane, is the contractor on the project, and Bernardo|Wills Architects PC, of Spokane, designed it.

Another GVD affiliate, Spokane-based Ruby Hospitality, owns and operates Ruby Suites.

Ruby Hospitality is marketing Ruby Suites as a “boutique-serviced residence” for guests who require a minimum of 30 days’ lodging, Dicker says. “The market includes visiting professors, doctors, and corporate executives,” he says. “It also includes people who have sold their homes and are waiting to move into a new home, and people relocating to Spokane and wanting to get used to the area before committing to a new home.”

Most of the three-story south building is expected to open in June, including the suites, which will be on the second and third floors, Dicker says, and a restaurant, Caruso’s Sandwiches & Artisan Pizza, on the ground floor. Caruso’s will occupy 3,500 square feet of space and a 1,200-square-foot patio.

Dicker says the lease for the second restaurant hasn’t been inked yet. The city of Spokane, however, is reviewing a building permit application for a Qdoba Mexican Grill restaurant that would occupy 3,200 square feet of space. “We’re talking to several restaurants, including Qdoba,” Dicker says.

Dicker says GVD helped fund the purchase of pedestrian-friendly traffic lights installed on Ruby Street at the Boone Avenue intersection, which will increase safety for the pedestrian link to the University District east of Ruby. He anticipates the city will activate the lights within a week or two.

Rustam Abdurahmanov, a Ruby Suites manager, says each unit has a bedroom with a king-sized bed and a separate living area. Each suite also has a complete kitchen with a full-sized refrigerator and a dishwasher. Dishes and utensils are provided, he says. Individual suites also have their own laundry area with washer and dryer, Abdurahmanov says.

Spacious bathrooms in some of the suites have Americans with Disabilities Act-approved walk-in showers, he says. Some suites have walk-in closets, and others have conventional closets.

Suites range in size from 750 square feet to 1,100 square feet. Room rates in the north building are $100 a night and include weekly maid service, Abdurahmanov says. Rates will be slightly lower in the south building, where suites generally are smaller, although they will have the same amenities, he says.

Ruby Suites’ main lobby, on the ground floor of the north building, features a living wall made up of an embedded assortment of growing plants. The lobby also has an expansive fireplace and a multimedia exhibition of artwork by local artists. The main floor also has conference room, a business center, and a fitness center. Dicker says still-planned amenities include a game and movie room, a rooftop deck with seating and a fireplace, basement storage lockers, and possibly a basement lounge.

Ruby Hospitality owns two downtown hotels, the Hotel Ruby, at 901 W. First, and Ruby2, at 123 S. Post. The company also owns Hotel Ruby Ponderay, near Sandpoint. Burgan’s Fine Furniture closed in 2008, shortly before GVD bought the block and razed two warehouse buildings on the Ruby Street side of the block, to make room for Ruby Suites’ 138-stall parking lot.  See more.