Surety Hotel Des Moines206 6th Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50309
Design Achievement - DLR Group’s design for the new Surety Hotel offers a juxtaposition of historic American opulence and contemporary artistry. It reflects a new kind of luxury that is comfortably rooted in quality and authenticity.
Originally designed in 1924, the Southern Surety Building's adaptive reuse from a working bank to a hotel explores the three parts of the self – public, private, and the in-between – and how architecture and design can evoke reactions and perceptions of the built environment in the ways we observe ourselves and one another. The tower façade makes a statement with elaborate Beaux-Arts features from the French school of architecture in Paris. The historic formal design evoked a rich and elegant character, which the DLR Group design team has characterized as the most public version of the self, adorned and on display. Newly designed interior spaces will introduce informality within a very formal shell. Pointedly more vulnerable, casual, and contemporary forms will represent the interstitial personas of society today. The upper level contains offices that are described – by current accounts – as well adorned. However, for the era, they were in stark contrast to the opulent first floor: simple yet spacious. The new hotel rooms will maintain the simplest, contemplative, bare reflection of our unadorned private selves. The design results in a hotel that is part heritage and part modernity – a parallel to what we portray of ourselves and who we really are inside.
Scope Summary - The scope of work for this project includes the adaptive reuse of an 82,750-SF, 12-story historic bank building in the heart of Des Moines, Iowa. The building has been used in the past as a working bank and various insurance and lawyer offices over the years. DLR Group contributed in collaboration with the AOR, Slingshot Architecture, to the National Park Service Part 2 application for historic tax credits. The design includes 137 keys with a presidential suite and five suites at the top 12th floor. Public spaces include a ballroom, prefunction/solarium, exterior courtyard, restaurant, hotel lobby, and meeting spaces on the 2nd floor. In addition to the NPS submittal, DLR Group played a significant role in the space planning and brand/concept visioning for the hotel. A technical achievement and goal of the project is to restore the existing coffered ceiling in the main bank space. This included detailed documentation of the existing plaster coffers and column capitals left in situ. DLR Group provided interior design services.