New hotel with French brasserie hits right notes in downtown Dallas
A new hotel concept is the latest occupant of a historic building in downtown Dallas: Called the Renaissance Saint Elm Dallas Downtown Hotel, it's now open at 1907 Elm St., aka the former Tower Petroleum Building, which dates back to 1932.
The property is owned by developer John Kirtland who previously opened it as Cambria Dallas in 2018. It now re-emerges under the Marriott umbrella, with management by Azul Hospitality Group, a San Diego-based hospitality company focused on lifestyle hotels and resorts.
It was given a multimillion-dollar renovation that more closely reflects Kirtland's tastes and personal history. That means a music-forward guest experience, deeply rooted in the locale and a natural fit with Kirtland's decades-long background as a musician, producer, and record label owner. (Kirtland was the drummer for the band Deep Blue Something, known for the 1995 hit song "Breakfast at Tiffany's".)
Guests might notice the movie that inspired that hit song playing in the original box office of the old Tower Theater space near the hotel's entry, and each hotel room comes outfitted with a record player, which can be used to play hidden gems uncovered from Kirtland's personal vinyl collection housed in the lobby, featuring records from all genres, which guests can check out through the front desk.
The hotel's architectural style features high and low juxtaposition elements imbued with a sense of clever theatricality.
The Renaissance has:
- 177 guest rooms and suites
- 2 in-house restaurants
- a 24/7 fitness center
- 5,600 square feet of meeting and event space
Guestrooms start at 460 square feet and go up to 950 square feet for The Majestic Suite, located on the 22nd floor, with 1.5 baths, a conference space, and a separate bedroom.
Nightly rates start at $219.
There are also two food and beverage options:
- Brasserie Toussaint, which serves lunch and dinner seven days a week as well as weekend brunch starting in the spring. The brasserie promises to be a relaxed, yet refined dining destination, with well-executed food and craft cocktails rooted in the culinary techniques of French and Asian flavors.
- Café Toussaint, open for breakfast and throughout the day, featuring Illy Coffee and to-go offerings such as pastries and sandwiches.
Designed by renowned architect Mark Lemmon, the building has served as home to the Tower Theater (part of Theater Row on Elm Street) and also housed the FBI for over two decades.
"The opening of the Renaissance Saint Elm is the realization of a shared vision with my good friend and Dallas hospitality industry veteran, Bobby Boulougne," Kirtland says in a statement.
Boulougne's passing in 2016 temporarily changed the course of the development, but Kirtland says that "the original vision of a boutique hotel experience that reflects the eclectic DNA of downtown Dallas and Deep Ellum is finally coming to life."