Last November news broke that Chattanooga’s historic St. George Hotel would be renovated and converted into a sexy hotel. Now it’s been almost a year, and the decrepit architectural relic still looms over Market & Main like a rotting gargoyle.
But things may finally be changing. Two days ago, I spotted a few gentlemen inspecting the property. I asked them some questions about the upcoming project, but they were understandably evasive. They were, however, willing to disclose one tantalizing detail… Southside will soon be getting another bank of luxury condos!!! That’s the most exciting news since a few weeks ago when we learned that an entire campus of 238 luxury condos was coming to the neighboring Choo Choo megaplex.
Originally known as the Grand Hotel, The St. George was opened a century ago. Its opulent facade was the first thing that greeted visitors as they emerged from the Chattanooga Choo Choo. But as the city fell into disrepair, so too did the hotel. A 2004 fire destroyed the back half of the building and complicated efforts to restore and renovate the property. After a 2012 demolition, that once-opulent facade was all that remained of the St. George.
In 2013 the property was purchased again, this time by Marta Alder of Miami, who put together an ambitious plan for a 55-room luxury hotel with spa, roof deck and jazz bar. Saving the building’s historic facade was a priority for all involved, but this design plan suggests it will be upgraded and homogenized to match the incredibly sexy lofts next door and the John Wise masterpiece across the street.
So after years of setbacks, fires and misfires, it seems construction may finally be commencing. While the luxury hotel planned in 2016 sounds delectable, I’m always partial to a good luxury condo. So I’m hoping the rumors of more condos are true. I know it sounds crazy, but I’m seriously considering selling my much bigger and much cheaper house that’s only two blocks away so I can snag a swanky condo of my own. Southside is definitely the place for a condo-ficionado like me!