Tiffin, Ohio — Tiffin City Council on Monday received an update from Florida-based developer and entrepreneur Eduardo Hernando on his proposed $43 million mixed-use riverfront development project.
Tiffin Riverfront Development LLC is headed by Hernando, a graduate of Heidelberg University in Tiffin, former captain of the football team, and current member of the university’s business school advisory board. The project was initially presented to the city in 2018 and has been through various stages of the development process ever since.
The proposed project at 15 East Market Street includes a luxury residential building with four to five floors containing over 100 condo units and over 60 rental apartments, a 100-room hotel with a 25,000 square foot convention center along with 5,000 square feet of meeting and event space for business meetings and conferences, weddings and events.
Hernando is required to provide updates on the project to council every 90 days, as a condition of the extension on the development agreement which was approved by council in July.
During Monday’s council meeting, Hernando said his group is beginning the process of selecting an architect from the area to develop the project.
“I used my Miami architect to get us through the process of initial review, site planning, setbacks, and everything we got approved. But the plan was always to use somebody from this region,” Hernando said.
Hernando said his group is also finalizing the financing for the hotel portion of the project. He is required to submit this information to council by Nov. 1.
Hernando also told council that the owners of Mr. Ed’s, a popular Lake Erie area restaurant, have signed a letter of intent to lease 7,000 square feet of space on the ground floor of the apartment building.
In addition to providing visitors with convenient access to nearby universities, restaurants, shops and the riverfront, the hotel will feature several upscale amenities, including an onsite restaurant, a full-service spa, retail and commercial space, and a rooftop bar and pool.
Hernando previously announced that the hotel portion of the project will be named The Edward Hotel and Spa, after the first governor of Ohio and Tiffin’s namesake, Edward Tiffin. The property will be part of the Ascend Hotel Collection from Choice Hotels, which according to Hernando, allows the hotel to access reservation systems and other industry-leading resources while retaining its operational independence and local charm.
Councilman Ben Gillig said he had hoped for more information from Hernando’s update.
“Well if I’m going to be forthright, I was truthfully hoping for a lot more concrete examples of progress that has been made, and not just four general outline statements,” Gillig said before asking Hernando if he had any additional information to share.
“I’m not sure what you expected at this moment. We were sitting basically 30 days not being able to do anything, and not being able to spend a penny or commit to anything. We’re in this process now to gear up and move in the direction where we will be back next month,” Hernando said.
“I believe I can deliver what needs to be delivered,” he added.
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