The American Hotel in Atlanta Merges Past With Present

By Matt Swenson, January 12, 2018

The aptly named Legacy Ventures knew The American Hotel, A DoubleTree by Hilton, was a prime property to be revitalized.

It’s walking distance to Atlanta landmarks like Georgia World Congress Center, Centennial Olympic Park and Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Better yet, the hotel is replete with history dating back to its 1962 opening.

As Atlanta’s only integrated hotel when it debuted, The American Hotel’s guest list included a who’s-who from the era. Elvis Presley, Jimmy Carter, James Brown, Nelson Rockefeller and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., are among the most notable names.

That history, and the property’s place in Atlanta’s civil rights movement, separates The American Hotel as it emerges from a $16 million renovation completed in late 2017.

“There are so many beautiful hotels out there, but many are new builds and they don’t have a story,” says Marc Szymanik, director of sales and marketing at Legacy Ventures.

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Legacy owns and operates five hotels in Atlanta’s downtown corridor, giving it about 1,200 rooms—315 of which are in the American—for conference goers and business/leisure travelers. All are new properties or recently renovated.

Szymanik says The American Hotel is the crown jewel because of its past, which is a central part of its future.

A 1965 Plymouth Barracuda is displayed outside the hotel. Inside, The Cloakroom Kitchen & Bar sports a Cold War-inspired design, down to the red phone situated in front of photos of John F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev. Some of the restaurant’s televisions show security footage in black and white, too.

There’s 20,000 square feet of event space, giving planners the ability to stay in-house for venture to nearby attractions like the Georgia Aquarium and Center for Civil and Human Rights for off-site meetings and receptions.

As such, Szymanik expects the hotel to attract corporate events and be a part of citywides. Regional association gatherings could be interested as well.

But beyond the renovation and history, the location is among the best in Atlanta. That will be The American Hotel’s best selling point going forward, Szymanik knows.

“It really is a central area,” he says.

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