Opened in the summer of 1892, the Brown Palace Hotel is a 9-story wonder made of sandstone and red granite and designed by well-known Denver architect Frank Edbrooke in the Italian Renaissance Revival style.
The triangular-shaped building has long been praised by critics, one of whom, G.E. Kidder Smith, in his Source Book of American Architecture, lauded the hotel’s “onyx-lined lower floors, the enormous stained-glass skylight, and the bronze balcony panels, all of which are scrupulously maintained.”
Visited by everyone from Dwight Eisenhower to Ronald Reagan to Bill Clinton, and even, during their tumultuous 1964 tour, the Beatles, the Brown Palace Hotel at 321 17th Street was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970.
Now the property, today officially called the Brown Palace Hotel and Spa, has been purchased by the Fort Worth-based Crescent Real Estate with plans in the works for an upgrade of all of its rooms.
The real estate investment firm, as part of an overall $125 million package, also purchased a 22-story Holiday Inn Express, with the idea of creating what will be a larger “Brown Palace Hotel Complex.”
The new owners say the two hotels, connected by a bridge across adjacent Tremont Place that was built in 1959, will see “significant capital investments and service upgrades.”
Those upgrades will particularly center on the top two luxury suite floors of the Brown hotel.
In a statement, Crescent also said that any enhancements “will retain the Brown Palace’s appearance, while honoring the Denver spirit and history.”
A timeframe for when those upgrades will begin has not yet been announced.
By Garry Boulard
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