Downtown St. Louis’ historic Mayfair Hotel has been acquired by Denver-based Stout Street Hospitality from Chicago-based UrbanStreet. The 18-story hotel will be closed while undergoing an extensive renovation. In early summer 2014, it will reopen as the rebranded Magnolia Hotel St. Louis. A total investment of $19 million will be made into the hotel between the purchase and a full property restoration.
In a statement Leigh Hitz, president and chief executive officer for Stout Street, said: “We are excited to be a part of the urban renewal and renaissance of the historic Central West End St. Louis business and entertainment district. As the first boutique hotel of its kind in the area, we believe we’ll provide both business and leisure travelers with a unique experience.”
Stout Street Hospitality is a management and development company that focuses on conversion of existing independent hotel properties. The core product line consists of boutique hotels under the Magnolia brand. The company currently operates Magnolia Hotels in Denver, Dallas, Houston and Omaha, Neb.
Founded by hotelier Charles Heiss from Bavaria, the Mayfair was built 1924-26 for $2.5-million and designed by prominent St. Louis architect Preston J. Bradshaw. Bradshaw helped design the House and Senate Buildings in Washington, D.C. as well as the Chase, Melbourne, Embassy and Coronado Hotels in St. Louis.
The concrete building is faced in red brick and terra cotta; it utilizes terra cotta extensively in its facing, window frames, ornaments, and cornices. The building contained three high speed elevators which were tended to by elevator operators.
In 1977, the hotel’s interior was renovated, removing 85 rooms; while the interior was redecorated, the renovation kept many of the original features. The property was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.
The hotel, which was originally named after the elite hotel district in London, will see every area restored and renovated with inspiration for the interiors and finishes of the hotel coming from the exterior limestone finish and detailing of the dentil molding. The simplicity of the design will be illustrated through weathered tones of neutrals and grays, juxtaposed against the existing leaded glass windows.
Numerous items from the Mayfair Hotel will be preserved during the renovation and donated to three Ronald McDonald Houses in the greater St. Louis area. Items such as bedroom furniture, kitchen dishes, utensils and more will be contributed to the local houses.