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Allegiant enters hotel business with Florida resort

Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air will build a resort development in Florida's Gulf Coast, marking the ultra low-cost carrier's entry into the hotel business.

The property, Sunseeker Resorts, will include a resort and up to nine condominium towers as well as restaurants, shops and a marina, developed over 20 acres of land on the waterfront. It is not immediately clear how much the airline is investing in the project.

"Our growth and success with air service in Punta Gorda, visitor trends in the region, and this unique, spacious waterfront property all point to an exceptional opportunity for a resort that vacation home owners and hotel visitors will love," says Allegiant president John Redmond.

Allegiant had previously indicated plans to launch a hotel initiative, promising to share details around this time.

Chief executive Maurice Gallagher had pointed to the airline's third-party sales of hotel rooms to its passengers, and said that the carrier is looking to enhance its ability to gain further revenue out of its customer base.

Allegiant says Sunseeker will bring an additional 300,000 visitors annually to the area, and have an economic impact of up to $1 billion over ten years. The airline operates to six cities in Florida, offering more than 200 routes.

The carrier is holding a conference call later today to discuss the initiative.

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