101-room hotel in the Genesee County Savings Bank building slated to open in 2020
FLINT, Mich., Sept. 25, 2019 — A new Hilton Garden Inn is set to open in downtown Flint in 2020, with the first look inside one of the guest rooms revealing the incredible transformation underway inside the former Genesee County Savings Bank Building at 110 W. Kearsley St.
Based on an original design by Tracy & Swartout, a then-prominent New York architectural firm, the historic 11-story building was Flint’s second skyscraper when it opened in 1920. The current transformation of the nearly 100-year-old building will result in a 101-room Hilton Garden Inn, complete with a full-service restaurant, a meeting and banquet center, and rooftop deck.
The hotel will be managed by Crescent Hotels and Resorts. Flint-based firms DW Lurvey Co. and Sorenson Gross are jointly managing construction of the project. Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group is applying its expertise as the architect, interior designer and historic consultant. Financing for the project is being made possible through Uptown Reinvestment Corp. (URC), the project developer, Michigan Economic Development Corp. (MEDC), Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Skypoint Ventures and Local Initiatives Support Corp., along with Huntington Bank and Old National Bank.
“The transformation of the historic Genesee County Savings Bank into a modern Hilton Garden Inn will symbolize to the region and beyond that the revitalization of Flint is underway” said URC President Tim Herman. “It will provide business and leisure visitors with upscale accommodations in downtown Flint and expand the customer base for our local restaurants, arts and cultural institutions, and community events.”
The model room revealed Wednesday, Sept. 25, showcases the modern design and amenities that will be present in each guestroom upon completion. The hotel’s interior design draws inspiration from and complements elements of the building’s late-Art Deco-style renovation, completed in 1947. A guest entering the room will experience welcoming, bright and warm white walls, accented with pops of color through the upholstery fabric and classic wood tones featured on furniture pieces. The nods to the Art Deco period extend to the subtle scallop pattern on the upholstered headboard. Bold geometric patterns in the rug and accent wallcoverings make an appearance throughout the space. The artwork on the walls incorporates abstract deco shapes overlaying historic images of the city of Flint. The guestrooms will reflect unique layouts and designs, a common feature of historic buildings that have been restored and preserved in a modern fashion.
“Crescent has numerous historic properties in our portfolio, but this property’s transformation from a 1920s bank will definitely create a unique experience for guests,” said Michael George, Chief Executive Officer of Crescent Hotels & Resorts. “As an award-winning Hilton manager, team Crescent and our unique approach will maximize the potential of this property.”
The grand banking hall on the ground floor will be converted into a new destination restaurant. An existing balcony overlooks the restaurant and bar and will serve as a pre-function area to the meeting rooms and banquet spaces on the second floor. Upstairs in the tower, original marble wainscoting, bases and door casings remain, and are being restored to be incorporated into the hotel’s corridor design. A new rooftop bar – with views overlooking Buckham Alley to the south and of Kettering University’s campus to the west – is planned for the top of the adjacent five-story Sherman building. Patrons will enter the bar through the hotel’s main entrance and lobby at 110 W. Kearsley.
Genesee County Bank renovated and expanded the building previously, but not to the extent of the current renovation. The original Italian Renaissance Revival design of the banking hall and base of the tower was modified in 1947 to a streamlined and elegant late-Art Deco style. At that same time, the Sherman Building was connected to the tower at each floor. The sleek stainless-steel clad Saginaw Street entrance and airy two-story banking hall along Kearsley Street will retain much of the Art Deco detailing, which will be highlighted in the new restaurant. The original bank vault door will be incorporated into a private dining area.
“Historic buildings are an essential part of bringing new life to great cities, and through the preservation of the Genesee County Savings Bank building our team has been incredibly focused on implementing innovative design and details to this soon-to-be standout hospitality destination,” said Bob Kraemer, principal and co-founder of Kraemer Design Group. “It’s meaningful for every member of our team to have such a hands-on role in the restoration and revitalization landmark buildings here in Michigan, including this exceptional project here in Flint.”
During the latter part of the 20th Century, the building’s windows were replaced, except for the windows in the two-story banking hall. Current work includes replacing the non-compliant windows with historic replicas. The faded bank sign on the north façade has been repainted with the original vibrant colors and the building’s crowning copper cornice has been repaired. An application has been submitted to recognize the building on the National Register for Historic Places.
Crescent Hotels & Resorts is an award winning, nationally recognized, top-3 operator of hotels and resorts. Crescent currently operates over 100 hotels, resorts & conference centers in the US and Canada. Crescent is one of the few elite management companies approved to operate upper-upscale and luxury hotels under the brand families of Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt and IHG. Crescent also operates a collection of legendary independent lifestyle hotels and resorts under Latitudes Collection, Lifestyle by Crescent. Crescent’s clients are made up of hotel REITs, private equity firms and major developers. For more information, please visit www.crescenthotels.com or connect with Crescent on LinkedIn.
Uptown Reinvestment Corp. (URC), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, works to revitalize and support downtown Flint by improving its attractiveness for entrepreneurs, employers and residents, and as an entertainment destination. Founded in 1999, URC brings together a broad-based coalition of interests, including government, education, business and philanthropic institutions, to drive business investment in the downtown district. For more information, visit www.uptownreinvestment.org.
Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group (KDG) is a leading, high-end architecture, interior design, and creative firm celebrating more than 20 years of experience in historic renovation and comprehensive architectural consulting. Serving the commercial, multi-family residential, hospitality and retail industries, KDG is the industry leader in outovation; combining highly technical industry experience with unparalleled creativity to create exclusive design solutions. For more information, visit www.thekraemeredge.com.