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Fort Worth hotel scene revival continues with Kimpton Harper in downtown

🕐 3 min read

While the hospitality industry has been pretty quiet through the pandemic, Fort Worth’s hotel scene is coming to life. In April, we saw the opening of The Drover, a Marriott Autograph hotel in the Stockyards.

Now, June 2 will see the opening of the highly anticipated Kimpton Harper Hotel in the former Farmer’s and Mechanics Bank building downtown.

Development Services Group Inc., based in Memphis, acquired the architectural landmark near Sundance Square from XTO Energy in November 2018 and oversaw the adaptive reuse to convert it from an office building into The Harper Hotel. DSG Inc. is a licensee of San Francisco-based Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants.

The hotel will be the first Kimpton property in Fort Worth but joins two others in the state. One, the Kimpton Pittman Hotel, recently opened in Dallas’ Deep Ellum district. The other, in Austin, has a Fort Worth connection. It is named the Kimpton Hotel Van Zandt, a nod to the late Texas singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt, whose family is firmly entrenched in Fort Worth history.

Kimpton Harper Hotel is set to feature 10,000 square feet of meetings and event space, including the Sanguinet Boardroom (keep that name in mind when you get to the next paragraph) on the 24th floor and the Centurion Ballroom on the second floor, and a rooftop observation deck with 360-degree views of Fort Worth.

Originally built in the heart of downtown Fort Worth in 1921 as the headquarters for Farmer’s and Mechanics Bank, the reimagining of the building coincides with the 100th anniversary of its original completion. It was designed by Sanguinet and Staats, one of the most prominent architectural firms in the city. Mauran, Russell and Crowell served as associate architects and Westlake Construction Co. of St. Louis was the general contractor, according to the Architecture in Fort Worth website. At 24 stories, the building was once the tallest west of the Mississippi and was the tallest in Fort Worth until 1957.

On the top floor will be Refinery 714, a penthouse bar and lounge named for the hotel’s street address (714 Main St.). Other dining and drinking options include Il Modo, a ground-floor restaurant and bar serving Italian fare, led by Chef Matt Williams.

 Il Modo is located on the ground floor, easily accessible for both travelers and locals, and the restaurant offers a view of its pasta-making room for a behind-the-scenes look. For special occasions, private dining is available, as well as pasta-making classes.

The Harper Hotel has  226 guest rooms and suites.

Designer Cynthia Forchielli of Forchielli Glynn brought the details to life. Local art is featured and guests can find nods to Fort Worth’s history such as a panther figurine (referencing the ‘Panther City’ nickname) that greets guests upon opening the room closet. Guest rooms and suites offer Frette bedding, Atelier Bloem bath amenities, Bluetooth speaker systems, and plush bathrobes. For guests wanting a little extra space to spread out, 31 one-bedroom suites offer amenities and more, such as soaking tubs, wet bars, and views of downtown Fort Worth and surrounding plains.

The Harper Hotel is managed by Pivot, the lifestyle operating vertical of Davidson Hospitality Group.

Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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