CityFlats Hotel takes top development redevelopment award

November 9, 2011
| By Pete Daly |
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Chalk up yet one more honor for Holland entrepreneur Chuck Reid, who was named the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Michigan Small Business Person of the Year last year, one of 53 SBA honorees nationwide invited to the White House during Small Business Week. Only three of the state award winners at the Rose Garden ceremony were then invited to chat with President Barack Obama for a few minutes in the Oval Office, and Reid was one of them.

At the two-day University of Michigan/Urban Land Institute annual conference in Detroit this year, Reid will receive the top award in the Development/Redevelopment category for the CityFlats Hotel that opened earlier this year in downtown Grand Rapids.

Last fall, Reid’s first CityFlats Hotel in downtown Holland took the Green Building award from the Associated Builders and Contractors/Western Michigan chapter. Open since early 2007, it is reportedly the first hotel in the Midwest to achieve LEED Gold Certification. It’s environmentally friendly features include cork flooring installed with low-VOC adhesives; naturally hypo-allergenic bamboo linens; locally manufactured CityDrçm mattresses; curtains lined with a black-out fabric to reduce energy costs; high-efficiency heating and cooling units; low-flow faucets and toilets; energy-efficient fluorescent light bulbs; countertops made from Cradle-to-Cradle Certified recycled glass and concrete; locally manufactured furniture and décor; and low-VOC paint.

Nearly all of the seating and décor for both hotels was manufactured by a business Reid owns: Charter House Innovations in downtown Holland.

The Grand Rapids CityFlats Hotel is also designed and built to LEED standards with the intention of qualifying for a LEED Gold certification. It is in the former Fox Jewelers building at 83 Monroe Center, a 137-year-old, five-story building that underwent extensive renovation. It is a lot like the CityFlats in Holland but only about half its size with just 28 guest rooms, and with a ground floor lounge, whereas the Holland hotel’s Bistro is on the fifth floor. The Grand Rapids hotel’s CitySçn lounge, which seats 70, has a full bar and a dining menu that almost matches a full-service hotel restaurant.

Reid describes it as a boutique hotel that offers a unique downtown Grand Rapids experience, while providing accommodations that are a little more intimate than those of a large hotel.

Charter House Innovations is a 160,000-square-foot manufacturing business that designs and produces seating and interior décor for quick-service restaurants, hotels, universities and fine dining establishments. The company’s sales have quintupled since Reid and two partners bought it in 2004.

Reid, a native of Pennsylvania, began his career as a high school industrial arts teacher in the early 1980s but was laid off after just one year due to declining enrollment. Although he enjoyed teaching, the loss of his teaching job proved to be the gateway to a successful career in business.

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