Historic Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood sold for $460 million

In a mega-hotel deal, Thayer Lodging Group has purchased the historic Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood.

Thayer, based in Annapolis, Maryland, has paid $460 million to buy the 1,000 room, beachfront hotel from United Association, a 370,000-member plumbers and pipefitters union based in Annapolis.

Thayer declined to comment Friday morning on the purchase of the hotel, which was reported in the Daily Business Review.

In addition to the hotel, with spa and tennis courts on nearly 10 acres at 3555 S. Ocean Dr. in Hollywood, Thayer also bought a neighboring 18-hole golf course for $20 million, and paid $55.5 million for several adjacent parcels at 3451-3690 S. Ocean Dr.,

Thayer made the deal through three affiliates, Diplomat Hotel Owner LLC, Diplomat Golf Course Venture LLC and Diplomat Landings Owner LLC, according to a deed recorded Thursday in Broward County, the Daily Business Review said. In total, Thayer paid $535.5 million to Diplomat Companies Limited Partner, linked to the plumbers' trade union.

The Diplomat has a storied history, initially opening as a luxury resort in 1959.

Both the size of the hotel and the purchase price are among the largest in South Florida.

Thayer is a privately held hotel investment company that was formed in 1991 by Frederic V. Malek and Leland Pillsbury. Since forming its first private equity fund in 1991, the company said it has completed 41 hotel investments with a total acquisition cost of $2.4 billion.

According to Thayer’s website, its funds currently own a portfolio of 14 hotels and 3,637 guest rooms and, through its investment in Interstate, have ownership interests in 64 hotels with 11,655 guest rooms.

Thayer owns several other hotels in South Florida: the Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel & Executive Center, the Marriott Courtyard Miami South, the Miami Airport Marriott and the Residence Inn Miami Airport South, all in Miami-Dade, as well as the DoubleTree Hotel and Executive Meeting Center in Palm Beach Gardens.