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The Blackhawk Hotel is officially on track to re-open after an extensive renovation.

At Wednesday night’s city council meeting, aldermen unanimously voted in favor of an economic development agreement calling for Missouri-based Restoration St. Louis to invest more than $21 million in the currently vacant hotel, as well as $8.5 million in state historic preservation tax credits.

The company plans to create a 100- to 105-room “boutique” hotel, three floors with 30 high-end luxury apartments, a restored lobby, open atrium and first-floor bar, conference rooms, fitness center and spa facilities to complement the city-owned RiverCenter.

Transfer of the Blackhawk from current owner Isle of Capri Casinos Inc. to Restoration St. Louis is to occur within 10 days of approval of the development agreement.

Restoration St. Louis co-owner Amrit Gill said he’d like to see construction start in six to seven months, with some site preparation and demolition beginning prior to that. The targeted opening date is spring 2010, he said.

“This is probably one of the most significant things we’ve accomplished this year,” Mayor Bill Gluba said after the vote.

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