Second hotel opens at I-75 and S.R. 70

EAST MANATEE — As recently as six months ago, the busy intersection of Interstate 75 and State Road 70 lacked a single hotel.

Now it has two.

On Monday, the 79-room Country Inn & Suites by Carlson opened at 5610 Manor Hill Lane in Tara, on the southwest corner of the intersection. It followed by just a few months the opening of the Wingate by Wyndham, located diagonally on the northeast corner of the intersection at 5464 Lena Road near Rosedale Golf and Country Club.

There is a possibility of a third hotel coming to the Casto Development at River Club Park of Commerce on the southeast corner. Brett Hutchens, chief executive officer of Casto, has previously said there is hotel interest in the location near where a Wal-Mart SuperCenter is being built.

Becky Miller, director of sales and marketing for Country Inn & Suites, said the hotel offers guests the convenience of restaurants and other shops in Twelve Oaks Plaza, and is located just minutes from Lakewood Ranch.

The hotel is owned by ASAP Hospitality Inc., which also owns a Best Western on Cortez Road.

Amenities at the hotel include a swimming pool, fitness center, wired and wireless Internet access, LCD televisions, a business center and meeting room.

Paul Patel, general manager, said there is a demand for hotels at the intersection, and that having more than one works to the advantage of the consumers as well as the hotels.

Room rental rates start at $79 a night, he said.

The new hotel is part of Minneapolis-based Carlson Hotels Worldwide, whose operations include Radisson, Regent and Park Plaza Hotels & Resorts.

James A. Jones Jr., East Manatee editor, can be contacted at 708-7916.