An Iowa hotel that is the state’s third-tallest building is being sold.
The downtown Des Moines Marriott is 33 stories tall and has 373 guest rooms. The late John Ruan, the founder of a trucking company, helped bring the Marriott franchise into downtown Des Moines in 1981. His family has held a majority interest in the hotel ever since.
The Singerman Group is buying the property for $33.6 million.
John Ruan was a major donor to Republicans and the property has been a gathering place for prominent politicians for decades. GOP candidates like George W. Bush used the property for their Caucus Night parties. It was partly because of Ruan and partly because of the size of the hotel.
In the run up to the 2008 Iowa Caucuses, there were so many reporters for national media outlets staying at the downtown Des Moines Marriott that the hotel became known as “the dorm.” In the weeks leading up to the 2016 Iowa Caucuses, Bloomberg Politics turned the hotel’s former street-level bar into a live TV studio for its daily “With All Due Respect” program.