COLUMBUS, Ohio, Dec. 19, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Washington Prime Group Inc. (NYSE: WPG) today announced new hotel and residential uses at the site of its three Oklahoma City properties, further enhancing the Company’s owned retail components which total approximately 310,000 SF.

These new mixed uses are expected to draw a significant increase in annual visitors to the Company’s collection of three properties – Classen Curve, The Triangle at Classen Curve and Nichols Hills Plaza, benefitting existing tenants and generating strong future leasing demand.

The planned 120-room Ellison Hotel is expected to open in 2021 on The Triangle of Classen Curve site just north of Whole Foods. The lifestyle boutique hotel will include a restaurant developed by Chris Lower and Joseph Royer, a rooftop swimming pool and bar, and 7,000 SF of meeting space including a ballroom and library lounge.

The hotel is named in honor of Oklahoma City literary icon Ralph Ellison with designs aimed at featuring local artists and authors. The hotel will be the first in Oklahoma under the Tribute Portfolio, Marriott International’s newest brand that accommodates independent hotels with a variety of designs and an emphasis on the local community. The developer and owner of the Ellison Hotel is Plains Management Group of Oklahoma City. Washington Prime Group completed in 2018 the sale of the land for the hotel development.

Expected to anchor the residential component is The Residences at Classen Curve, a five-story multifamily project with about 325 for-rent units, planned on an approximately four-acre site adjacent to The Triangle at Classen Curve and Nichols Plaza, which is currently undeveloped. The Residences at Classen Curve is expected to be the only Class A community in Oklahoma City with walkability to Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, and it will also be walkable to nearly 20 dining options and multiple lifestyle and fitness concepts. Hines, an international real estate firm, plans to partner with Humphreys Capital to develop The Residences at Classen Curve.

The Residences at Classen Curve project is expected to feature resort-style amenities including a private fitness center, as well as private amenities such as courtyards, pool, club room, coworking lounge, dog run, package facilities and significant bicycle storage to take advantage of the site’s adjacency to the Lake Hefner Trail. Construction on The Residences at Classen Curve is slated to begin in 2020 with occupancy expected to begin in late 2021. Washington Prime Group expects to complete the sale of the land to Hines during the first half of 2020.

Offering some of the area’s most unique retailers and dining options, this collection of properties is ideally situated in the heart of Oklahoma City. With a mix of trendy local tenants and upscale national chains, these three town centers boast distinctive modern architecture in an unparalleled setting, while providing an unequaled shopping and dining experience to residents and tourists. Moreover, many retailers have their only Oklahoma City location here, making this a truly desirable location.

The dynamic tenant lineup at Classen Curve includes retail and lifestyle tenants lululemon, Kendra Scott, Rustic Cuff, Red Coyote, Cos Bar, Warby Parker, Bonobos, Tecovas, Mizzen + Main, Athleta, Soft Surroundings, Sur La Table, Evereve, and one of the top CycleBar locations in the country. The Triangle at Classen Curve is anchored by Whole Foods, Anthropologie, and West Elm. Adjacent Nichols Plaza is anchored by Trader Joe’s, CK & Co, Balliet’s, Naifeh Fine Jewelry, Hollywood Feed, and Orange Theory Fitness.

The collection of properties serve as the area’s premier dining destination featuring food and beverage options Republic Gastropub, Café 501, Tucker’s Onion Burgers, Zoës Kitchen, En Croute, Upper Crust, and The Hutch on Avondale. During the past 24 months, the Company executed leases with several exciting, new dining options including HopDoddy Burger Bar, a free-standing Starbucks Coffee, Osteria Italian, Chicken Salad Chick, Flower Child, and Torchy's Tacos.

New tenants expected to open in 2020 include BC Clark, Flower Child, and Torchy's Tacos.

These properties continue to benefit from an incredibly talented local management team. Shane McWhorter, General Manager, is instrumental in executing the long term vision, and together with Marketing Director Shannon Barghols, the team has implemented a robust schedule of community events. Classen Curve hosts nearly 100 events throughout the year which drive guest traffic, encourage extended visits and strengthen the town centers as the gathering place to shop, eat, drink, play – and now live – in the Oklahoma City area. Learn more at www.classencurve.com.

About Washington Prime Group
Washington Prime Group Inc. is a retail REIT and a recognized leader in the ownership, management, acquisition and development of retail properties. The Company combines a national real estate portfolio with its expertise across the entire shopping center sector to increase cash flow through rigorous management of assets and provide new opportunities to retailers looking for growth throughout the U.S. Washington Prime Group® is a registered trademark of the Company. Learn more at www.washingtonprime.com.

Contacts
Lisa A. Indest, CAO & EVP, Finance, 614.887.5844 or lisa.indest@washingtonprime.com
Kimberly A. Green, VP, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, 614.887.5647 or kim.green@washingtonprime.com

Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 which represent the current expectations and beliefs of management of Washington Prime Inc. (“WPG”) concerning the proposed transactions, the anticipated consequences and benefits of the transactions and the targeted close date for the transactions, and other future events and their potential effects on WPG, including, but not limited to, statements relating to anticipated financial and operating results, the company’s plans, objectives, expectations and intentions, cost savings and other statements, including words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “plan,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “will,” “should,” “may,” and other similar expressions.  Such statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of WPG’s management, and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance, or achievements of WPG to be materially different from future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.  Such factors include, without limitation: changes in asset quality and credit risk; ability to sustain revenue and earnings growth; changes in political, economic or market conditions generally and the real estate and capital markets specifically; the impact of increased competition; the availability of capital and financing; tenant or joint venture partner(s) bankruptcies; the failure to increase mall store occupancy and same-mall operating income; risks associated with the acquisition, (re)development, expansion, leasing and management of properties; changes in market rental rates; trends in the retail industry; relationships with anchor tenants; risks relating to joint venture properties; costs of common area maintenance; competitive market forces; the level and volatility of interest rates; the rate of revenue increases as compared to expense increases; the financial stability of tenants within the retail industry; the restrictions in current financing arrangements or the failure to comply with such arrangements; the liquidity of real estate investments; the impact of changes to tax legislation and WPG’s tax positions; failure to qualify as a real estate investment trust; the failure to refinance debt at favorable terms and conditions; loss of key personnel; material changes in the dividend rates on securities or the ability to pay dividends on common shares or other securities; possible restrictions on the ability to operate or dispose of any partially-owned properties; the failure to achieve earnings/funds from operations targets or estimates; the failure to achieve projected returns or yields on (re)development and investment properties (including joint ventures); expected gains on debt extinguishment; changes in generally accepted accounting principles or interpretations thereof; terrorist activities and international hostilities; the unfavorable resolution of legal proceedings; the impact of future acquisitions and divestitures; assets that may be subject to impairment charges; significant costs related to environmental issues; and other risks and uncertainties, including those detailed from time to time in WPG’s statements and periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including those described under “Risk Factors”.  The forward-looking statements in this communication are qualified by these risk factors. Each statement speaks only as of the date of this press release and WPG undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.  Actual results may differ materially from current projections, expectations, and plans, if any.  Investors, potential investors and others should give careful consideration to these risks and uncertainties.