Marriott plans luxury hotel at former site of Joe Louis Arena in Detroit

Renderings of the JW Marriott at Water Square which will be built at the site of the former Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

It's been four years since the last remaining pieces of Joe Louis Arena were hauled away in trucks – and it's been seven years since the Red Wings moved into Little Caesars' Arena – now a new 600-room luxury hotel is coming to the site on the edge of the Detroit Riverfront.

JW Marriott is planning a 25-story 600-room hotel on the site of the former arena – just adjacent to the Residences at Water Square.

The luxury hotel will be the first JW Marriott in the City of Detroit and will include 50,000 square feet of meeting spaces, restaurants, lobby bar, market, and more.

"This connected hotel will change the hospitality landscape in the City of Detroit and allow for Huntington Place to attract more and larger conventions. It will be a significant economic benefit to the City and the region," said Danny Samson, Chief Development Officer of Sterling Group. "We are appreciative to The Union Labor Life Insurance Company (Ullico), the State of Michigan, City of Detroit, and Oakland, Wayne and Macomb Counties for their continued support and all of their efforts to make this project a reality," Samson continued.

Renderings of the JW Marriott at Water Square which will be built at the site of the former Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

The hotel, once complete, is expected to generate $100 million in new spending each year – while creating a positive impact for the city and the state. 

Hotel construction started in April and is expected to be done by early 2027 – ahead of the Men's NCAA Final Four in Detroit in March of that year.

The hotel, like the apartments neighboring, will be built be financed by the Union Labor Life Insurance Company (Ullico), which is the same lender that financed the Residences at Water suare.

"We are proud to invest in a Detroit project that supports unions," said Brian J. Hale, CEO and President of Ullico Inc. "Through J for Jobs, we help increase the vast economic power of the labor movement while bolstering local economies."

The project will be an all-union project that will create more than 400 direct and indirect jobs as well as more than 600 union construction jobs.

The hotel project is being built with support from County Executives Warren Evans, Dave Coulter and Mark Hackel, and Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan – as well as the city council and other organizations.

"The recent NFL draft has generated a lot of interest in other large events coming to Detroit. The addition of a 600-room hotel attached to our convention center already will make us much more competitive, and having a luxury brand like JW operating the hotel takes things to a whole new level. Visitors staying there will enjoy world class services and amenities, along with spectacular views of downtown and direct access to our nationally recognized riverfront." said Duggan.