Retail development slated in north Carson City

Construction of a multimillion-dollar motel-restaurant project is expected to get under way in the new year at the corner of Carson Street and Broadleaf Lane, near what could be the first freeway exit on Carson City's northside.

Carson City motel owners Malkait S. Dhami and his son, Jessie Singh, purchased the 18.3-acre parcel for $3.825 million to build a Holiday Inn Express, a high-end restaurant and retail development.

The partners expect to break ground on the 83-room hotel in January and complete construction by mid-2003. Costing between $4.5 million and $5 million, the inn will include 15 suites, an indoor pool and spa, two meeting rooms, a fitness room and high-speed data access for computers.

The motel is the first phase of the project. Bids are being accepted, and a contractor probably will be chosen next week, Dhami said.

Construction of the restaurant on one acre of the property is the second phase, and the retail space will be built on the remaining 15 acres. No time line has been set for construction of the restaurant or retail space.

Joe McCarthy, Carson City's economic development and redevelopment manager, said a quality hotel will increase local room tax revenues. The taxes fund the Carson City Visitors and Convention Bureau and strengthen the city's ability to market itself as a destination.

"We're very excited to have a quality motel like the Holiday Express coming to Carson City," McCarthy said. "With facilities like these, more people can shop downtown and visit our restaurants and cultural facilities like the Nevada State Museum, Railroad Museum and Brewery Arts Center."

"I think it's an example of people starting to invest because of improvements to attractions," McCarthy said. "We're now being chosen as destination location, as opposed to a place to visit for a day."

Dhami said city officials have been very cooperative, and he hopes to return that favor.

"It's about consumer confidence," Dhami said. "When people know this kind of money is being invested in Carson City, it encourages them to invest here."

Originally from Punjab in northern India, Dhami was a civil engineer there for 33 years. After leaving India, he owned a gas station and convenience store in Alabama then built houses with his brother in Vancouver, Canada.

In 1996, he purchased his first motel, the Carson City Inn.

"We like it here," he said. "The town is neat and clean, with low crime, good schools and loving people."

Singh and his father expanded their property interests by purchasing Carson City's Best Western Trailside Inn and Comfort Inn in Redding, Calif. In December 2001, they purchased the Holiday Inn Express in Winnemucca. Singh said business has been good.

"Sept. 11 didn't hurt us because we aren't dependent on air traffic," he said. "Carson City hasn't been a major destination, but we get the overflow from Reno and Lake Tahoe."

The father-and-son partnership recently incorporated to form Carson City Hotel LLC.


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