Tampa's 1905 federal courthouse has been transformed into La Meridien Hotel — Photo courtesy of La Meridien Hotel
Located in the heart of downtown Tampa, a national historic landmark has been transformed into a sophisticated and luxurious hotel. Built in 1905, the grand beaux arts building, fronted with towering Corinthian columns, has been saved from the ravages of time to become Le Méridien Tampa.
The hotel location had originally been a federal courthouse. Closed 16 years ago, the building was then largely left untouched and unloved despite attempts by the city to find a tenant. That all changed when Development Services Group took over and brought the impressive structure back to life. The transformation took 16 months and $26 million to complete, and the finished product takes your breath away.
Now part of the exclusive Le Méridien brand, owned by Starwood Hotels and Resorts, this national landmark has a new lease on life, providing visitors to Tampa a very memorable experience. As visitors walk up the imposing front staircase, past the soaring columns and enter the lobby, they are greeted by a comfortable, contemporary atmosphere designed to promote conversation and creativity called "The Hub." Guests are invited to linger in casual seating areas with an expertly prepared espresso and browse the selection of carefully curated local books.
The Hub inside La Meridien invites guests to relax and recharge — Photo courtesy of La Meridien Hotel
Guestrooms are comfortable with contemporary furnishings, and décor has a European flair. Fully equipped with a desk, access to WiFi, a 42-inch flatscreen and a mini fridge, rooms are functional as well as beautiful. Other hotel amenities include a state-of-the-art fitness room and an indoor pool. Perhaps surprisingly, pets are welcome, with an additional fee.
The hotel is serviced with its own French bistro called Bijou Brasserie, which is open for breakfast lunch and dinner and features the best French cuisine has to offer. Guests can indulge in luscious homemade pastries in the morning and dry-aged, hand-cut beef in the evening. Le Méridien also features the Longitude Bar, which serves sparkling refreshments, beer, wine and sodas.
To further enhance the guest's stay, Le Méridien Tampa offers experiences designed to enhance creativity and change perspectives. As part of this endeavor, guests are able to visit the Tampa Museum of Art without charge. All you need is your room key. The room keys themselves are works of art designed by the hotel’s LM 100, a group of global artists and visionaries who create the guest experience for Le Méridiens around the world.
Intrigued? To celebrate its grand opening, Le Méridien Tampa is offering guests a special room rate of $119 per night through the end of September 2014.