21c Museum Hotels Selected as Brand and Management of Restored Historic YMCA Building in Downtown St. Louis

USA, Louisville, Kentucky. April 09, 2019

21c Museum Hotels, the award-winning boutique hotel and restaurant group, has been selected to serve as the brand and management company of the restored YMCA building located at 1528 Locust Street in downtown St. Louis. 21c Museum Hotel St. Louis, expected to open in late 2020, will be a combination boutique hotel, contemporary art museum and independently branded, chef-driven restaurant.

21c Museum Hotel was founded by preservationists and contemporary art collectors Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson. Motivated by changes happening in and around their hometown of Louisville, they assumed an active role in the preservation and revitalization of the city's downtown. With the belief that art can be a vital part of daily life and a spark to ignite new energy and ideas, they created 21c Museum Hotels in Louisville in 2006.

"We are thrilled to be a part of this important project and we look forward to working with the City and the State to make this challenging urban revitalization initiative a reality," said Craig Greenberg, President and CEO. "21c St. Louis will support the continued revitalization of downtown St. Louis and will be a center for culture, community, genuine hospitality and artistic expression."

Upon completion, 21c Museum Hotel St. Louis will be the company's eleventh property, with approximately 200 guest rooms and suites. Building on the founders' mission to bring contemporary art to the public through innovative exhibitions and programming that integrates art into daily life, 21c St. Louis will feature exhibition, meeting and event space showcasing rotating curated exhibitions, interactive site-specific art installations and a roster of cultural programming based on collaborations with local and national arts organizations. Welcoming local residents and visitors alike, the museum will be open free of charge to the public, 365 days a year. The property will also feature a unique, chef-driven food and beverage concept and rooftop venue.

The 10-story YMCA building was constructed in 1926 in the Renaissance Revival style, with some Gothic elements, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Floors one through three were previously operated by the YMCA and floors four through ten were most recently operated as apartments. The building includes two basements that contain a pool and locker rooms.

This spring, 21c Museum Hotels joins Accor's MGallery collection of boutique hotels, marking the introduction of the MGallery brand into the North American market. Each MGallery property has its own unique design and story to tell, from Hotel Molitor Paris - MGallery and INK Hotel Amsterdam - MGallery to Hotel Muse Bangkok Langsuan - MGallery and Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney - MGallery.

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The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.