Manchester Texas Financial Group of Austin, Texas, headed by Douglas W. Manchester, son of Douglas F. ("Papa Doug") Manchester, has enjoyed some good news.
Manchester's planned Austin hotel
Manchester Texas is building a $350 million convention center hotel in Austin. It will have 37 stories and is slated to open in 2017. On August 24, a master plan commissioned by the City of Austin recommended a large expansion of the convention center. According to the Austin American-Statesman, the expansion, costing between $400 million and $600 million, would occupy all or part of four city blocks. The report has been presented to the city council's Economic Opportunity Committee.
The report was done by Gensler, a big architectural consulting firm. Gensler is also the architect for the Manchester hotel.
Manchester Jr. told the Austin American-Statesman that the hotel — to be managed by Fairmont Hotels and Resorts — has already booked thousands of room nights. "Austin continues to experience strong demand from all market segments, especially in-house group meeting and citywide conventions," Manchester said.
Doug Manchester and his now-former wife Lauren
Getting financing for the hotel was difficult because Austin has had a hotel-building boom and hotel consultants told the Reader that there was widespread fear of overbuilding. An expanded convention center would enlarge the market — if it was able to attract conventions.
In other Manchester Jr. news, on June 17, his marriage to Lauren Manchester, a native San Diegan, was officially ended, according to records of the district court of Travis County, Texas. Lauren, who now goes by the name Lauren Johnson and is in the real estate business, filed the divorce suit, according to records.