Hotel has 90-day construction cycle

A new fast-built hotel concept is debuting in the Bakken region and is set to open by the end of the year.

The Shut Eye Hotel, a project developed jointly by the Banyan Investment Group and Proteus On-Demand, will be the first of the units to be built and features a 90-day construction cycle and a final product that can also be moved without leaving any trace behind, Chris Cooper, Banyan vice president of special projects, said.

The 70-unit hotel in Alexander will accommodate long-term guests with some space also remaining for short-term stays, depending on demand, he said. If requests are high, more units could be added quickly and room rates will be in the $100-130 per night range. The rate includes breakfast in the morning.

“There was built-in demand,” Cooper said of the Bakken area. “Start out with a bang and then go from there.”

Cooper said the units, which each include an extra long, full-sized bed, are about 50 percent spoken for, though no contracts have been set.

“We have a lot of promises but no heads on beds yet,” he said.

The company is also looking at the potential for construction in Haiti and could use the quickly implemented concept in future disaster relief situations, Cooper said, including something similar to Hurricane Katrina, as well as in a possible Olympic Village down the road.

Whereas other concepts include a foundation and are built for the long-haul, the Shut Eye is a design that works well in an uncertain region, he said.

“No one can give a solid answer – is the boom going to be there for 10 years or is it going to be there for 50 years?” Cooper said. “And this way, we can adjust as needed.”

The hotel is designed with modules forming the majority of the building’s exterior, he said, with a covering to put it together.

Cooper said overall, he anticipates seeing high demand for rooms in Alexander, which is central to Watford City and Sidney.

“There wasn’t a lot of hotels there already so we just saw the need there,” he said. “It seemed to be a logical place to go.”

Future expansion could also include more locations in the North Dakota oil boom area, Cooper said.

“If opportunity shows itself in different communities within the Bakken region, we would be open to expanding there also,” he said.

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