The four-star boutique hotel at Pearl is slated to open sometime early in 2015, according to Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants. Located in the 119-year-old Pearl brewhouse, Hotel Emma will have 146 rooms as well as a restaurant, bar, catering and in-room dining service.
The hotel will have an “authentic place” on the Pearl campus in the 119-year-old brewhouse. Its name was chosen in honor of the wife of Pearl Brewery founder Otto Koehler.
Emma Koehler is credited for keeping the brewery afloat during Prohibition after her husband’s death. She converted brewery operations to function as a dry cleaner, for making near-beer, ice cream and sodas, and managed to keep the entire staff at the brewery employed during these “dry” days.
When Prohibition ended in 1933, she was there to direct the staff as they rolled out cases and kegs of beer to an eager public awaiting their first glass of real beer.
Kimpton also named the new hotel’s general manager, Steven André. He is former general manager of Hutton Hotel in Nashville and Hotel Derek in Houston; and Director of Sales and Marketing Beth Smith, formerly of the Watermark Hotel & Spa, La Mansion del Rio Hotel, and Valencia Group in San Antonio.
John Brand was brought on to the Hotel Emma team as executive chef and culinary director. Formerly of The Mokara, Omni La Mansion and Broadmoor, Brand brings to Hotel Emma over 20 years of experience in the culinary industry.
According to material provided by the owners, Hotel Emma’s architecture and interiors, designed by Roman and Williams, “embrace the extravagance of the iconic 19th century brewhouse as well as the shirtsleeve industrial aesthetic of the brewery’s ‘back rooms.'”