Korman Communities and its Hotel AKA brand has partnered with Electra Real Estate to create a joint venture, Electra America Hospitality Group (EAHG), dedicated to acquiring, enhancing, and reimagining the boutique luxury hotel as The World’s Most Livable Hotels in major cities in the United States and other countries.
AKA, a division of Korman Communities, has been an award-winning global leader in luxury serviced residences for over 15 years, that specializes in combining the hospitality of an intimate hotel with the comfort of a fully furnished luxury condominium. Now AKA, operating as the Hotel AKA brand, is set to expand on its achievements to transform the hotel experience into one that is high quality and more livable bringing all the comforts, calm, and contentment associated with home living along with the style, hospitality, and service that are signature characteristics of staying at an AKA Hotel Residence.
About to enter its third year operating as Hotel AKA, the partnership has already acquired, transformed, and reopened six hotels in iconic locations in Miami, West Palm Beach, Boston, New York City, and Alexandria, VA:
Hotel AKA is just getting started. Larry Korman, AKA President and Co-CEO of Korman Communities, explains: “By 2025, we plan on doubling the number of properties our enterprise manages with our $750 million dollar fund. Hotel AKA also plans on expanding globally to cities like London, Paris, and Milan. Global cities resonate with us – the global citizen is passionate about design, which is a perfect match for AKA. We really want our properties to be global ambassadors, not just for AKA but for the human spirit of love, respect, understanding and peace.”
Looking to the future, EAHG is targeting hotel acquisitions with 150 to 300 rooms, valued from around $20 million to as much as $100 million. Once acquired, these properties will be transformed into 4-star hotels and extended-stay residences under the Hotel AKA brand.
Larry Korman describes the process of choosing a property to acquire and renovate: “The idea is to buy distressed properties that were once iconic, but in need of improvements and updates to accommodate the modern traveler. There must be a good cost to value ratio in order to bring the investment to full fruition, so if the price didn’t make sense, we’ve passed on properties. We go all-in three-dimensionally to make sure we buy right, renovate and transform the property properly, and make the acquisition shine anew as a Hotel AKA.”
This exciting partnership was born out of Korman Communities and Electra Real Estate’s desire to become a powerful player in the transient and traditional hotel market. Electra rightly saw AKA as the perfect property management partner. Russ Urban, CEO of Electra America Hospitality Group, has said, “AKA is an excellent operator in a highly niched segment of the hospitality market that’s currently very underserved, and Electra, as a multifamily expert, brings expertise in the residential space. So, it’s a perfect marriage of two formidable real estate groups.”
The partnership was a perfect pairing, as Korman Communities and Electra Real Estate shared the same strategic vision to bring The World’s Most Livable Hotels to major cities across the United States and globally. This joint venture has also allowed AKA’s portfolio to evolve and grow from 9 serviced residence properties in New York, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, London, and Washington, DC to 16 properties total, both hotels and hotel residences. Hotel AKAs are in new markets: Boston, Miami, West Palm Beach, and Alexandria, VA. With the recent opening of Hotel AKA Nomad in New York City and soon to open Hotel AKA Washington Circle, the Hotel AKA brand will also operate alongside existing AKA Hotel Residences in New York City and Washington, DC.
Hotel AKA is different from more traditional forms of hospitality real estate management due in great part to the collaboration and synergy between Korman Communities and Electra Real Estate. Russ Urban in an interview with Hotel Investment Today remarked, “What distinguishes the AKA/Electra partnership is the alignment of interests, equity investment and return rewards tied to the brand and operations. All the big brands are one-sided, receiving a royalty on top line with no risk. With AKA’s partnership, we’ve gained a great financial partner – a fifth-generation, family-owned business – willing to make a meaningful equity commitment to each deal.”
With a commitment to excellence, Hotel AKA is steadfast to redefine the luxury hotel experience. Guests staying at any Hotel AKA property can expect to experience a cohesive blend of AKA's signature style from state-of-the-art amenities to personalized service; the hotels cater to daily, weekly, and long-term guests, offering an unparalleled sense of home away from home.
“Always a pioneer in innovation, AKA is now the global leader in extended-stay luxury hotel residences for both the business and leisure traveler,” says Larry Korman. “Having become so renowned and well-known, there is a large demand for more of our properties across the entire country. With this new EAHG partnership, we’ll now be able to offer AKA Hotel Residences, which is our established weekly and monthly fully furnished apartment offering, alongside our new Hotel AKA product to more cities in America. This joint venture reflects our decades-long commitment to delivering unparalleled luxury experiences to guests and residents.”