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Hospitality Watch

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The lapsed luxury embodied by the former Chicago Athletic Association building at 12 South Michigan has made for some tremendous photo ops in recent years. The Venetian-Gothic landmark's frozen-in-time appeal won't be around much longer, as an investment group including AJ Capital Partners (Hotel Lincoln, Soho House) and John Pritzker now has their construction loan for a 240-room boutique hotel conversion. Interior demo has begun, also involving the neighboring building at 71 E Madison, and the $105M hotel should open in fall 2014. Set to operate under the Commune/Thompson brand, the project doesn't have an exact name just yet but we can tell you it expects to compete in the "upper upscale" category. [Crain's, previously]