The Philadelphia Inquirer reported on October 20 that Kimpton Hotels plans
to renovate into a Kimpton Monaco hotel the historic Lafayette Building at
5th & Chestnut.
The late Philadelphia developer, Hal Wheeler, had publicized plans to
construct a Kimpton Monaco Hotel as part of his visionary plans to turn the
Boyd into a mixed use entertainment and film venue. The Recession has
stalled construction of any new hotel in Philadelphia. Renovation of a
historic building like the Lafayette is always less expensive than new
construction, so Kimpton will locate on Washington Square and that has
potential of becoming a preservation success for the Lafayette Building.
Fortunately, the huge expansion of Philadelphia’s Convention Center means
that many more hotel rooms will ultimately be needed in Philadelphia. And,
there are many other upscale hotel brands that could become part of the Boyd
Friends of the Boyd have seen many “ups and downs” in Boyd plans over the
years. We will continue to volunteer on our most worthy cause.
Howard B. Haas