By Kevin Collison
The new Aloft hotel has opened on the north edge of the Country Club Plaza, bringing a contemporary vibe to the venerable shopping district that includes a spacious “re-mix” lobby anchored by the WXYZ Bar.
“We very much believe in the unique environment of the Plaza, the experience is unlike anything else in Kansas City and in a lot of ways, the country,” said Jeffrey Kempton, vice president of operations for Capital Management.
“There’s an experience to be had on the Plaza that’s different than a mall.”
Capital Management is the developer of the $100 million project that also will feature an adjoining 180-room Cascade boutique hotel, part of the Marriott Tribute Portfolio. The Cascade is expected to open later this year.
The Cascade also will include a food hall to be operated by the Strang Chef Collective and featuring four “chef-driven” concepts, two bars and a coffee shop.
Strang currently operates food halls at the Edison in old Overland Park and the lightwell office tower in downtown.
“We’re excited to bring a fast-casual concept to the Plaza,” Kempton said.
Guests at both hotels will be able to access the two-level food hall and order room service from it. The hotels will be connected by a hallway, and guests at the Aloft also will be able to use the Cascade fitness center.
The Aloft, which is located at 393 W. 46th St., features a design that Chris Curtis, director of sales and marketing, described as “sassy, savvy and space.” It’s the third Aloft in the Kansas City metro and one of more than 165 in the U.S.
While the rooms are relatively small, they’re designed to maximize the space. The real action occurs in the lobby, which is labeled “re-mix” as a nod to being a place where people gather to socialized.
The WXYZ bar will feature six signature cocktails and patrons can order heavy appetizers. There’s a pool table, comfortable seating and an emphasis on music with plans for live acts at least once a month.
“It’s funky and a place for the young at heart,” Kempton said.
Capital Management, which owns a half-dozen hotels in the metro, is confident the rebounding, post-Covid travel market will make both Plaza hotels successful. Kempton said demand in 2022 exceeded the last year before the pandemic.
“The hospitality industry had to go through a revitalization and hotels had to focus on guest service,” Curtis said. “The hotels that caught on are coming back.”
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