Red Lion on Coburg Road to close in January 2014

EUGENE, Ore. - The Red Lion Hotel Eugene will close by the end of January to clear the way for the property to be redeveloped for retail use, Red Lion Hotels Corporation said Tuesday.

Red Lion said it hopes to partner with an existing hotelier to maintain its brand somewhere in the area.

The 51-year-old Red Lion Hotel Eugene on Coburg Road sits across the street from the Oakway Center and adjacent to shopping centers.

Under the agreement, the company will relinquish control of the lease on the hotel on January 31, 2014, allowing a new tenant to redevelop the property for as commercial retail space.

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage said they will be the next tenant on the lease.

The company started in Colorado in 1955, and has expanded throughout the Western United States.

It is focused on natural and organic goods.

Red Lion said it plans to maintain a presence in Eugene after the Coburg Road hotel closes.

"Our associates have made the Red Lion brand integral to the Eugene and University of Oregon communities for decades now," said Jim Evans, interim president & CEO of Red Lion. "We hope to be a part of this community for years to come and by relinquishing control of this hotel we are allowing new development to flourish in this area. It is a priority for Red Lion to identify a new location in Eugene for one of our brands. We are confident we will find a hotel owner in the area that desires to benefit from Red Lion's strong brand recognition, excellent infrastructure and unparalleled service."

The hotel will continue to operate until late January 2014. Red Lion will work with any guests with reservations or events planned for after that date to be relocated to a nearby hotel.