A Look Into The Merion: Owner and Operator Danny Michael Shares His Personal Connection

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This fall, The Merion in Evanston will launch its fabulous new tower. At this momentous occasion, we take a look back at how this building has a very personal connection for owner Danny Michael.

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People have walked in after the renovation and can’t believe it’s the same building. They’re amazed and love it.

An astute businessman, Danny Michael nonetheless found himself motivated a bit by emotion when he bought The Merion in 2012. Danny and his wife Martha had celebrated their wedding in the hotel’s Crystal Ballroom 46 years earlier, and the building brought back happy memories. From a professional perspective, Danny said that the purchase of what was at the time The North Shore Retirement Hotel fit his core business model of value-added deals.

“I like to take dilapidated properties and bring them back to life. When things have been neglected and run down, I like to bring them back to where they should be, “ he said.

Danny confessed that when he bought the property, he initially had no intention of working in the retirement community business.

“I liked the property, and knew the value of the great location in downtown Evanston. We talked about turning it into student housing or market apartments. But there were tenants living here and I didn’t want to have to force them to leave their homes,” he said. “Once I made that decision, I knew that the first thing I wanted to do was give the people living there something beautiful. They were living in substandard conditions by my view. I decided we’d redo the building and they could live out the rest of their lives the way that I myself would want to live,” he said.

“My vision was to create a very unique, very upscale community. Upscale not in terms of pricing, but in terms of providing a home that people this age deserve,” Danny said. As the amazing transformation of each apartment and all common areas concluded earlier this year, Danny observed, “It met my high expectations. It’s beautiful. It’s some place that I could see myself living.”

“People have walked in after the renovation and can’t believe it’s the same building. They’re amazed and love it. I get a lot of compliments and it gives me great pleasure,” said Danny.

In 2014 Danny set about expanding The Merion, building its new tower. Now approaching its completion, Danny said, “People are very excited about this. We have residents lined up who are excited to move in.”

The Merion is a luxury senior living community for active, independent retirees seeking a hassle-free rental home in Evanston. Formerly known as The North Shore Hotel, The Merion has been totally renovated with upscale finishes and is the preferred senior living community of Northwestern University Athletics. For additional information, visit http://www.MerionEvanston.com or call 847-253-7941.

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Bridget Machalinski

Bridget Machalinski
@MerionEvanston
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