Mille Lacs Band buys 2 hotels in St. Paulby Conrad Wilson, Minnesota Public Radio
ST. CLOUD, Minn. — The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe will announce its purchase of two hotels in downtown St. Paul at a news conference at 9:30 a.m. Monday.
The band has purchased the Crowne Plaza and the DoubleTree hotels, according to people with knowledge of the deal. It will give the band ownership of nearly half of the hotel rooms in the state's capital city.
While the band will own the hotels, they will be operated by Graves Hospitality.
The purchase will not expand gambling in the Twin Cities.
The band wants to diversify its revenues, and one of its stated goals is to own a hospitality property in every major U.S. market and turn its corporate commission -- the business side of the band -- into a $1 billion company.
The hotel purchase is the latest example in a growing trend by tribal nations across the country to diversity business interests as threats to casino gambling operations increase.