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Restoring a Treasure


Arkansas Federal Credit Union steps in as the financial partner for the restoration of the historic Arlington Hotel in Hot Springs.

The Address:

239 Central Avenue, Hot Springs, AR  71901

The Story:

A massive effort is now underway to restore a beloved landmark, The Arlington Resort Hotel & Spa (The Arlington) in Hot Springs, Ark. Hosting guests since 1875, this historic hotel is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Arkansas and one of Hot Spring’s most elegant and treasured structures.

Over the years, however, The Arlington had begun to show her age and needed some love and attention. With a passion for restoring old hotels, Al Rajabi, CEO of Sky Capitol Group, San Antonio, Texas, bought the hotel to restore it back to its original 1920s-era splendor and prestige.

“For nearly 100 years, it has been an important landmark in the community, and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to restore this iconic hotel to its original glory,” said Rajabi. “I’m committed to preserving its beauty and grandeur and creating a truly unique experience for guests.”

Rajabi has been involved in other high-profile hotel restoration projects but admits that The Arlington Hotel is his favorite.

“It’s amazing the amount of craftsmanship,” Rajabi said. “The hotel was done over the top for its day, and they had some great artists and craftsmen, so I’m honored to be carrying on the tradition.”

The restoration project is most noticeable to the public outside, as scaffolding currently surrounds parts of the building. However, don’t let that detour you from booking a stay now. Even though the restoration project is fully underway, the hotel is still operational and open for business.

Rajabi, and its financial partner, Arkansas Federal Credit Union, expect it to be fully restored by next winter and, when complete, will “be the most luxurious property that Arkansas has ever seen.” (taken from amp quote)

When it came to navigating the lending process, Rajabi said that he appreciated the personal time and attention he received from Arkansas Federal, especially from David York, Senior Commercial Loan Officer III.

“Having David on our team allowed me to focus on the many other challenges I faced that come with restoring a historic building, such as looking at codes, coming up with a gameplan on how to best preserve the building’s architecture, and other aspects of the project,” said Rajabi. “The finance part of it was the least of my worries.”

The project was definitely a unique one, according to York.

“It’s not often that someone wants to restore a nearly 100-year-old hotel—let alone restore that hotel to its original facade,” said York. “That being said, we at Arkansas Federal are just as excited as Al [Rajabi] to see it restored, and we’re thrilled that he chose to partner with us.” What about your needs? Are you looking to enhance your current business or need to look at financing options? Or perhaps you’re in another industry and not sure where to start. Contact Arkansas Federal for all your questions and help with business checking, savings, loans, and more.

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