Bill Price, firstname.lastname@example.org , Kendall Herold, email@example.com
12:50 PM, Oct 24, 2012
11:28 AM, Oct 25, 2012
COVINGTON, Ky. - A $25 million luxury boutique hotel is coming to Covington -- and it's being built inside what's currently city hall.
The Salyers Group, a Covington commercial real estate company, is working with the Milwaukee-based Aparium Hotel Group, to turn the city hall building, located at 638 Madison Avenue, into The Hotel Covington.
Plans call on keeping the historic shell of the building, which originally housed a fancy department store that catered to the well-to-do of the time. Now, the 102-year-old building will house a specialty hotel that could potentially boost much of downtown Covington.
"We're very excited about this project," said Covington City Manager Larry Klein. "We think the impact is going to be huge. It's going to be great for the small businesses already in the area. It's going to attract more small businesses as we bring in out of town people and people who live here."
The $25 million project is expected to create approximately 125 jobs, and represents the first project of the Catalytic Development Funding Corporation -- a not-for-profit agency that provides funding assistance to developers of quality residential and commercial real estate projects in Northern Kentucky.
The Hotel Covington will have 107 rooms and feature a signature restaurant and bar, according to The Salyers Group. The group says the project will rehabilitate the seven-story building, which was built in 1910, using the then-new construction techniques of reinforced concrete with brick veneer.
"Our family has a long history of investing in downtown Covington, and over the years, our investment in building and operating reception halls and retail businesses have helped bring hundreds of thousands of people to Covington," Guy van Rooyen, president of The Salyers Group said in a news release. "We see this hotel as a truly catalytic project and a great opportunity to restore another historic building in the heart of downtown Covington while at the same time bringing additional visitors, from further away, to this wonderful community."
He says he sees The Hotel Covington as a complement to the existing wedding venues already in that area of downtown Covington, which includes The Madison Event Center, the Madison Avenue Wedding Mall, and Donna Salyers' Fabulous Bridal -- all operated by The Salyers Group. Van Rooyen says the event centers generate more than 3,500 hotel room nights each year, due to weddings.
The Aparium Group has developed two hotels, The Iron Horse Hotel in downtown Milwaukee, and The Elysian Hotel Chicago, which is now known as the Waldorf Astoria Chicago.
"The Hotel Covington will draw inspiration from the local culture and cultivate a following through a sense of civic pride and exciting food and beverage," said Aparium Hotel Group CEO Mario Tricoci.
Covington City Hall will be moved to another location, but that decision will be made in the next few months. City Manager Klein says Covington is considering as many as six possible locations for moving city hall.
"It's going to bring a new energy to an area of the city that has been neglected for years," said Covington Mayor Charles Scheper. "But this is going to be truly catalytic in its impact to the city, I believe."