HRI Properties is currently redeveloping the Liberty Title Building in Philadelphia, in partnership with Realen Properties, into a 179-key Aloft hotel. Located one block from historic Philadelphia City Hall Square, the hotel is adjacent to and has a direct connection to the Pennsylvania Convention Center Philadelphia. The new hotel will open summer 2017.
Originally constructed in 1925 as the headquarters for the Liberty Title and Trust Company, many historic features will remain in the design of the hotel, primarily in the former bank lobby, which will become the new hotel lobby and WXYZ bar. The converted building will also offer guests an outdoor rooftop bar and patio, 990 square feet of meeting space and modern loft-inspired guestrooms.
"We are very excited that Aloft Philadelphia Downtown will be HRI’s first property in the Philadelphia market. Our company prides itself on transforming architecturally significant buildings in urban areas and elevating them into vibrant new properties. We certainly feel we have done that with the Liberty Title Building and are eager for visitors to downtown Philadelphia to engage with the Aloft brand,” Tom Leonhard, president and CEO of HRI, said in a statement.
Evan Glenn Evans has been appointed as the hotel’s GM, having most recently served as GM of the One Liberty Observation Deck, a new attraction to Philadelphia. He was the opening GM for Le Méridien Philadelphia, recruiting and hiring the hotel’s entire initial staff, and holds additional hotel brand experience with Westin and Hyatt. As GN, Evans will be instrumental in opening the new hotel and will be in charge of directing all aspects of hotel operations. Additionally, Anastasia Owens has been hired as the hotel’s director of sales. Owens has held positions of increasing responsibility with groups such as OTO Development and CSM Corporation, serving in leadership roles for hotels across the country. She will oversee all sales efforts for the hotel, including training, developing and coaching sales teams to understand and exceed revenue, revPAR and sales productivity goals.
“We are thrilled to have recruited such terrific talent for two of our hotel’s top management positions. Their strong hospitality background coupled with their knowledge of the Philadelphia area will help guests have an authentic Philadelphia experience throughout their stay. We could not be happier that they joined our team,” Todd Iacono, VP of operations for HRI Lodging, a subsidiary of HRI, said in a statement. HRI Lodging will manage the new property.
The Aloft Philadelphia Downtown offers an alternative to the traditional business hotel. Guestrooms, meeting rooms and public spaces are all equipped with fast and free Wi-Fi, and the modern meeting space includes audio visual equipment and full catering options. The hotel’s WXYZ bar will offer free access to local, live events featuring emerging artists as part of Aloft's Live at Aloft Hotel events that take place around the world. Inspired by the public mural program in Philadelphia, the hotel will also include large-scale art installations and a rotating art wall featuring local artists.