Ashford Hospitality Trust, Dallas, has acquired a 21-property hotel portfolio for $250 million from affiliates of the Fisher Brothers, the Gordon Getty Trust, and George Soros, as well as some members of Ashford's senior management team.The real estate investment trust said the acquisition price for the 4,094-room portfolio includes the assumption of $164.7 million in debt, as well as $35 million in cash and the issuance of $50.3 million in operating partnership units. Monty J. Bennett, Ashford's president and chief executive officer, said the acquisition will provide Ashford added brand and geographic diversification. "The majority of the assumed debt will be fixed-rate, increasing our ratio of fixed- to floating-rate debt with only a minimal increase to our overall cost of debt," Mr. Bennett said. The purchase price for the acquisition, which is expected to be completed in February 2005, reflects a capitalization rate of 9.3%, based on the property's net operating income for the trailing 12-month period, the REIT said.

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