If you haven’t stayed at Woody Harrelson’s eco-friendly Inn at the Black Olive near Fells Point, you may be out of luck. But you still might be able to live there.
The Baltimore Business Journal reports that the five-story, 12-room inn at 803 S. Caroline Street has closed and is being converted to 12 apartments on the upper four floors, with a restaurant or brewery near street level.
The inn, which opened in 2011, was developed by the Spiliadis family, owners of the Black Olive restaurant. Harrelson and businessman John Dwyer acquired it three years ago for $4.5 million, when it was in foreclosure, and engaged Dimitris Spiliadis to stay on as the operator.
The building was designed to be one of the “greenest” buildings in the city, with energy saving operating systems and building methods. Harrelson reportedly invested in it after he stayed there while filming “Game Change” for HBO in 2011 and liked the experience.
The actor is known for his roles in “Cheers” and “True Detective” on TV and “The Hunger Games” and “No Country for Old Men” on film. He has not done much to use his star power to promote the inn the way another celebrity, arts patron Mera Rubell, has been promoting a hotel she owns in town, the Lord Baltimore.
No one answered the phone at the inn today. The inn has a recorded message stating that the building closed for renovations as of Jan. 1, and provides no way to leave a message.
Even with the new owners and investment, the inn did not become profitable, Dwyer told the BBJ. One problem, he said, is strong competition from larger hotels. Another problem was construction noise from the nearby Exelon Tower at Harbor Point waking patrons up early in the morning.
One of the biggest changes to the building will be adding full kitchens to the 12 guest rooms to convert them to residences. Work on the top level has already been completed, and Dwyer told the BBJ he expects work on other floors to begin soon.
Out-of-towners looking for a hotel in Fells Point, meanwhile, have a new option starting tomorrow. That’s when the 128-room Sagamore Pendry Baltimore hotel opens at 1715 Thames Street.
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