The first of Westerville's two upcoming hotels has announced an opening date.

After nearly two years of preparation, the 101-room Aloft Hotel by Starwood is nearly ready to open on the city's south side. According to General Manager Robert Ryan, the hotel has set a "tentative" opening date of Oct. 16 at 32 Heatherdown Drive.

The hotel project was announced in mid-2015, piggybacking on the announcement of the 224-room Renaissance Marriott Hotel and Conference Center under construction on the north side of the city.

Wayne Wellman, co-founder and president of CRM Cos., developer of the Aloft project, said in September 2015 that the two hotels would "play off each other" and coexist well.

"You can't bring business in if business has nowhere to stay," Wellman said.

The Aloft represents an investment of about $20 million, according to company co-founder and CEO Craig Turner.

The hotel boasts "loft-style" rooms, a gym, an indoor pool, indoor and outdoor bars and a 1,600-square-foot meeting space.

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