Meredith Dropkin

Hotel Laurent to Reinvent Luxury Service, Provide Five-Star Experience and Revitalize East Sarasota Main Street

Investor partners with Hoyt Architects, Gilbane Building Company and Cooper Carry to bring vision to life

Hotel Laurent Rendering SM for GRP

Sarasota, Florida – August 28, 2018 – For L. Ronald S. Gray, a decades-long vision of creating an incomparable luxury hotel is coming to fruition in downtown Sarasota. Hotel Laurent, his 10-story, 140-room passion project, is pending approval at 20 N. Washington Blvd. To be built in conjunction with Sarasota-based Hoyt Architects and Gilbane Building Company, and internationally-recognized design firm, Cooper Carry, the boutique hotel will revitalize the east end of downtown’s Main Street, while offering discerning travelers a level of service and accommodations unrivaled in the region. 

Local ownership will allow for an innovative approach to hospitality not mandated by a corporate handbook and focused on individually tailored experiences. All aspects of the brand will exude European-inspired opulence, from the lavish detail and styling to the attention to service and amenities. Preliminary plans include world-class dining options, a spa and gym, and a private concierge floor, club and rooftop pool.

“Hotel Laurent is the culmination of a lifetime of travel and a love for Sarasota,” said Gray. “We’re presenting a new take on luxury as well as the execution of elegant service – Five-Star with a smaller footprint. Our goal is to not only reenergize the eastern tip of Main Street, but to resonate with those who demand the very best. Hotel Laurent will be uniquely Sarasota and decidedly exceptional in every way.”

As the construction partners for this project, Gilbane Building, Hoyt Architects and Cooper Carry have engaged with Gray for more than a year evaluating possible sites, designs and budgets to make the most impact for Sarasota as this project will set a unique tone in the market that will challenge the current status quo. The ground breaking for Hotel Laurent is scheduled for 2019 and construction completion is expected in the fourth quarter of 2020.

“Hoyt Architects is delighted to be a member of the project team for the five-star Hotel Laurent,” said Chris Gallagher, vice president of Hoyt Architects. “We intend to create an unparalleled Sarasota experience, from the first glimpse of the hotel and the elegant street-side entries and lobby, to the exquisitely detailed rooms, the luxury spa, and the exclusive rooftop club and pool.”

To further bridge the connection to the community, there will be space for events and networking opportunities, and Gray is in the process of forming a 501(c)3 to embrace, support and showcase local and world-wide artists and sculptors. He also plans to coordinate with local food banks to provide unused food for distribution.

About L. Ronald S. Gray

A hotelier, former New York investment banker, and owner of Versaille St. Germain LLC, Gray’s interest in creating the archetype for the ultimate in hotel comfort and hospitality has been a lifelong process. He first came to Sarasota in 2002 and has frequented the area ever since. His affection for the city made it his ideal location to launch what he hopes will be a chain of similar hotel projects in Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and a host of other U.S. cities. For more information, contact Britney Guertin at or 941-351-0024. 

Grapevine Communications provides full-service advertising, marketing and public relations services to clients nationwide. The firm is the most award-winning advertising agency in Sarasota, Florida, and the surrounding areas. For more information on Grapevine Communications, contact Shaunna Norris ( at 941-351-0024 or visit the website at