Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Press Release

July 02, 2007

Eileen Larrabee
Cathy Jimenez

New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Selects Delaware

North Companies to Operate Saratoga's Gideon Putnam Hotel and Roosevelt Spa

New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) Commissioner Carol Ash today announced that, after an extensive and careful evaluation, Delaware North Companies Parks and Resorts (DNC) has been selected to operate the Gideon Putnam Hotel and Convention Center and the Roosevelt Spa in Saratoga Spa State Park. The DNC proposal calls for Saratoga Gaming and Raceway and DNC Parks and Resorts, to form a new company, Gideon Putnam, LLC, to hold the lease. The Hotel and Spa will be managed and operated by DNC Parks and Resorts.

In announcing the selection, Ash cited the quality of the proposal submitted by DNC, the expected benefits to the hotel and spa, and enhanced services to guests. Among these will be replacements and upgrades of furniture and accoutrements in the guest rooms, renovation of guest room bathrooms, reconfiguration of certain public areas on the first floor to improve visitor services, and extensive refurbishment of the Roosevelt Spa. She also noted DNC's extensive corporate experience in state and national park hospitality operations, and understanding of the unique requirements and opportunities inherent in a public-private partnership in a park context. In New York State, DNC currently operates concessions at Jones Beach, Robert Moses and Niagara Falls State Parks.

In addition, Ash pointed to DNC's well-established "green" program that, among many goals, seeks to maximize environmentally sustainable practices through a comprehensive approach that complies with international standards for environmental management.

The other firms that had submitted proposals to OPRHP are Saratoga Gideon Partners and Xanterra Parks & Resorts, Inc., the current operator of the facilities. The existing lease expires on December 31, 2007.

The selection of DNC is the result of a lengthy and thorough solicitation and proposal process extending over several months. The Request For Proposals (RFP) was issued in December 2006, and bids were due on April 30, 2007. Over twenty firms expressed an interest in the project.

After receiving the bids, OPRHP convened a committee of five senior professional staff to evaluate and score the proposals, which included a technical review of the written proposals as well as an evaluation of oral presentations by each bidder. Evaluations and scoring were based on bidders' relevant experience, expertise and ability to respond to the goals laid out in the RFP. Each proposal was also evaluated on the background and experience of the firm, particularly in a public park environment such as the Gideon Putnam in Saratoga Spa State Park. Additional consideration was based on the financial return offered by each entity, resulting in the selection of the proposal that offered the best overall value to the state.

Following the award announcement, OPRHP and DNC will now enter into lease negotiations. Upon completion of the contract, which is subject to approval by the Offices of the Attorney General and the State Comptroller, the new lessee will assume responsibility for the property. Commissioner Ash noted that all commitments by the current operator for 2008 and beyond would be honored by the new lessee. "We look forward to working with Delaware North to continue the tradition of first class service and gracious hospitality for which the Gideon Putnam Hotel is so well known," said Ash.