As the local economy cools and investors remain mired in uncertainty, some commercial real estate loans in Washington are again beginning to give lenders and ratings agencies reason for concern — a dour sign for more than $1 trillion worth of debt that will be coming due in the area over the next four years.
Potential trouble with loans can affect even properties that appear well on the way back to recovery, an indication of the yawning gap between pre- and post-recession business expectations.
Take the Ritz-Carlton hotels in the West End and Georgetown. The hotels, with 300 rooms in the West End and 86 in Georgetown, are enjoying one of their most impressive years ever, according to Elizabeth Mullins, Ritz-Carlton area vice president and general manager. She said average room rates were up about 6 percent and total sales were up 6.3 percent from 2010 to 2011 for the two hotels. Room occupancy, event business and restaurant revenue also climbed. “Literally everything was up across the board,” Mullins said.
Read more at The Washington Post.