By Ginny Cooper
Journal staff writer
Construction began last week on the Grand Bohemian Hotel at Parke Lane in Mountain Brook.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held Jan. 16 at the site where the boutique hotel will be built.
At the event, Richard Kessler, the Kessler Collection’s chairman and chief executive officer, promised that the 100-room hotel will “add to the quality of life” in Mountain Brook.
The Kessler Collection is partnering with the Lane Parke developer, Birmingham-based Daniel Corp., and Evson Inc. on the hotel project.
Officials said the hotel will be the centerpiece of the 28-acre retail, office and residential Lane Parke project. Lane Parke will include about 185,000 square feet of retail and office space along with 276 upscale apartments at the luxury hotel.
The $35 million hotel will be much more than the average hotel, Kessler said, with such amenities as 12,630 square feet of meeting space, an interactive cooking school, wine tasting and blending rooms and a dining room decorated in a Porsche automotive theme made possible by a partnership with the prestigious brand.
“The Grand Bohemian is going to be a very amazing place,” Kessler said.
The hotel will include the Poseidon Spa, a full-service facility easily accessible to both guests and the community, Kessler said.
The hotel will have a rooftop restaurant and bar that will be a draw for both local and out-of-town diners, he said.
Kessler said the Grand Bohemian will also include a sculpture garden, art gallery and hand-crafted pianos.
“It’s an experience in art, it’s an experience in music and hopefully it is an experience in culture,” Kessler said.
Mountain Brook Mayor Terry Oden said he looks forward to a “long, prosperous relationship with the Kessler corporation.”
The Grand Bohemian Mountain Brook will be the 11th hotel in the Kessler Collection, with others in Colorado, Florida, Georgia, New Mexico and North Carolina.
Barry Bloom, executive vice president of asset management at Inland American Lodging Advisor Inc., said his company is “excited to continue investing in Birmingham.”
Doug Neil, vice president of marketing and development for the Daniel Corp., said the project “began as a vision” and will be a “much-needed asset” for the area.
The general contractor for the project is Robins & Morton.
Plans are for the hotel to open in March 2015.