In a recent Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article, the newspaper stressed the impact that the Kimpton Milwaukee will have on the neighborhood, adding that it will be a "landmark" for the area.
"We've wanted a hotel in the Third Ward for a long time," said Greg Uhen, chief executive officer at Eppstein Uhen Architects, which is among the neighborhood's larger employers. "Given all the visitors that come to the neighborhood, I would imagine it would do quite well."
The strength of the Kimpton brand also helps raise the national profile of downtown Milwaukee's hotel market, according to industry consultant Greg Hanis.
"It puts the downtown Milwaukee market into a major new level," said Hanis, who operates Hospitality Marketers International Inc."
In addition to a Mediterranean-infused menu, with local and organic ingredients, the hotel will also feature a rooftop bar and lounge, The Outsider. The Outsider will be positioned 9 stories up and offer views of Milwaukee's Historic Third Ward, one of the nation's hottest neighborhoods, as well as the scenic Lake Michigan backdrop.
The 158-room hotel will be the first in the Historic Third Ward, which has seen an ongoing transformation since the late 1980's, from industrial buildings, to housing, offices, restaurants, stores, and other new uses.
The article explains, "the neighborhood, rebuilt after a devastating 1892 fire, for several decades housed dozens of manufacturers and wholesalers. It began declining in the 1960's, with businesses moving to newer buildings in the suburbs."
In 1984, the National Register of Historic Places recognized the Third Ward as a historic district, with the first redevelopment projects starting around that time. The redevelopment pace began accelerating during the '1990's, as more businesses and residents moved to the area.
"The neighborhood's current projects include the proposed One Catalano Square office building, 100 N. Young St.; the Domus apartments, under development at 441 E. Erie St.; the planned office addition at the Mercantile Building, 318-324 N. Water St.; the conversion of the former Mitchell Leather building into apartments and commercial space, 226 N. Water St.; and a former warehouse conversion into apartments and commercial space, at 211-213 N. Broadway."
The Kimpton Journeyman will be located within a few blocks of those projects.
San Felippo, chair of the Historic Third Ward Business Improvement District and former downtown hotel manager, notes the general, all-around support for the hotel by those in the area, saying, "everybody is looking at it as a major plus. It adds another element of a full-service neighborhood where people live, work and play".