Meet Norland James and his wife, Dr. Amina Gilyard Jamesowner of the newest black-owned Quality Inn hotel in Memphis, Tennessee.
With the help of a group of first-time African-American hotel investors, the two were able to purchase a 70-room property located in the city’s Raleigh neighborhood for $3.85 million.
However, Norland and Amina are not new to the industry. Between 2019 and 2021, they invested in two Hilton-branded hotels as limited partners and passive investors. Amina commented: “We learned a lot as limited partners and we just knew we wanted to buy our own hotel in 2022. Ultimately, our goal is to buy. adding more mid-range hotels in secondary markets in the South and Midwest regions of the country.”
More than readiness
The pair were more than ready for the acquisition they made.
Norland holds an MBA from the University of Phoenix, and started investing in real estate while he was stationed at Fort Bragg. His passion for real estate has blossomed over the years as he diversified his portfolio with hotel properties and short-term vacation rentals.
Amina brought many things to the table. A serial entrepreneur specializing in organizational development/performance and hospitality, she holds a PhD in Human & Organizational Learning from George Washington University. In addition, she is a seasoned consultant, speaker and investor with nearly 10 years of real estate investment and operation experience.
Choosing Memphis as the location was easy for the couple. After thorough research, they learned that the hotel market in Memphis has seen the strongest post-pandemic recovery in the United States. Furthermore, the company’s expansion into the region has boosted job growth and increased tourist arrivals to the area. Additionally, Memphis is centrally located on the Arkansas and Missouri state lines as well as major cities including Jackson, Mississippi, Atlanta, Georgia, and even Nashville.
“We knew this was going to be a success,” said Norland. “We have plans and consultants in place to increase customer satisfaction, execute marketing and sales strategies, and improve asset health.”
For more information about the couple and their hospitality project, visit their website at Duke-Ventures.com