KC Restoration has an exciting new project to share. We have been contracted to work with the Downtown Marriott and Centric Projects on both the main Marriott hotel and the historic Muehlebach portion of the hotel. This huge renovation project includes 35 elevator cabs and entrances, 900 lineal feet of bronze handrail, and 4 escalator units.
KC Restoration will be finishing all of them to an elegant rubbed oil bronze patina finish. We are also restoring some beautiful ornate lamps and a fountain (pictured to the right) which was originally designed as a spittoon when the hotel was built in 1915. Since then, the hotel has hosted Republican National Conventions, every President from Theodore Roosevelt to Ronald Reagan, Babe Ruth, Elvis Presley, and the Beatles. Harry Truman, who conducted business in the hotel’s penthouse on visits home, even signed the Truman Doctrine legislation at the Muehlebach.
We love getting to work on such an interesting part of Kansas City’s history and want to thank the management at the Downtown Marriott and the project managers from Centric Projects. You’ve been absolutely wonderful to work with.
Here are some project photos showing off the transformation of a bronze handrail at the Downtown Marriott:
And here’s some more about what we learned about the Muehlebach’s history: It was designed by Holabird & Roche for George E. Muehlebach, son of the founder of the local Muehlebach Beer Company. In 1952, a 17-story annex and parking lot were added to the original 12-story building. In 1996, Marriott Hotels bought the property, renovated the historic building, and incorporated it as one of three wings of the Downtown Marriott.
The origins of the Barbershop Harmony Society, now a 25,000-member international organization, is also linked to the Muehlebach. Two of their founders met at the hotel lobby and sang their way through the snowstorm that had marooned them there. You can find a commemorative plaque regarding that meeting in the original lobby.
To learn even more about the hotel or the Muehlebach family, check out this site from the Kansas City Public Library: http://www.kclibrary.org/blog/week-kansas-city-history/beer-baron-born.