Holiday Inn Express set to expand

A wooded area behind the Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Marathon will eventually be a 27-unit extension of the hotel near mile marker 54 oceanside.

“I can’t say exactly when work will start, but I’d say very soon. The permits have been issued,” said Marathon City Planner George Garrett.

Marathon City Council members on Tuesday approved the extension of a development agreement for the additional units on the property where there is already a 134-room hotel, swimming pool, restaurant, marina store and docks.

The rooms, each slightly larger than a regular-sized hotel room, will be built on a 1.8-acre wooded plot, which has to be cleared first, Garrett said.

Development of the land was approved three years ago by the city, he said, but it took a while for parent company Spottswood Cos. to get approval for its mitigation from government agencies like the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“It’s basically going to be a motel back there but not as much like the current one because that’s more of a standard hotel,” he said.

Representatives for Spottswood could not be reached for comment. The Holiday Inn Express & Suites was built in 2010 and is one of nine hotels in the Florida Keys owned or managed by Spottswood Cos., based in Key West.

Katie Atkins: 305-440-3219