Earlier today, I added a hard hat and safety goggles to my average Monday attire and toured the still-under-construction Potawatomi Bingo Casino Hotel. (The hotel will change its name this summer to Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.)
Construction started in the summer of 2012 and is expected to be completed by mid-summer 2014. The hotel will, most likely, open to the public this fall.
Despite the tarps and dust and unpainted walls and exposed plumbing, the hotel is already impressive due to the incredible amount of natural light and the views, which will undeniably rival as some of the city’s best.
When complete, the hotel will be 18 stories high – the superstitious will be happy to know there won’t be a floor 13 – with 341 rooms ranging in size and amenities. (Fun factoid: 415 soap dishes and 381 ice buckets are already on order.)
The hotel will also include seven meeting / party rooms, in-house dining, full bar, coffee shop and exercise area. An additional parking garage featuring 1,400 more stalls is also in the works.
"All of this will allow us to bring people to Milwaukee who have never been here, as well as national conventions," says Kaelyn Cervero, Potawatomi's sales and catering operations manager.
The restaurant concept and coffee vendor is still in the works, but Hassan Abdel-Moneim, Potawatomi’s hotel director, says they are shooting for local.
"We are going with local companies whenever we can," says Abdel-Moneim. "Including local construction companies and Kohler fixtures."
The hotel will cost about $150 million with $97.5 million in construction costs and $47 million in construction payroll. Once in operation, the project is estimated to generate $10 million a year in additional revenue for the city of Milwaukee, Milwaukee County, VISIT Milwaukee and the state of Wisconsin.
The hotel will add approximately 230 permanent jobs to the 2,600 already existing jobs at the casino.
The project has been in progress for 514 days without a single lost-time accident. (OK, I'm knocking on wood now.)
"We’re very proud of that," says Facilities Director David Brien.
The hotel will feature a number of environmentally friendly systems and features including a storm water capture system, low-flow plumbing fixtures, central dimming systems and lighting controllers, demand-controlled ventilation in the meeting rooms, natural lighting and the use of recycled products, materials and native plant species in the landscape.
According to Abdel-Moneim, the new hotel will be LEED certified, which is the recognized standard for measuring building sustainability.
The décor will feature a "warm and natural" color palette with nods to the natural elements and Native Culture.
The hotel will be connected to the casino, however, it will be non-smoking (unlike the casino) and will, most likely, appeal to people even if they are not interested in gaming.
"Regardless of anyone’s thoughts on gaming, the hotel is going to provide great service, food and entertainment," says Cervero. "The new meeting space is really flexible and ideal for functions of all sizes."
1 comment about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Molly Snyder
Published Oct. 1, 2014
In 1937, Alfred Woelbing began making Carmex by hand, pouring the lip balm into the familiar yellow-capped jars in his Milwaukee kitchen. Today the company is based in Franklin and owned by Woelbing's grandson who says, despite rumors, the product is not addictive.
Published Oct. 1, 2014
Here is a list of items I've eaten that were not food.
Published Sept. 30, 2014
The BMO Harris Bradley Center reopened Turner Hall Restaurant in 2012 and it closed to the public this summer. Now, new food and tavern licenses have been applied for.
Published Sept. 28, 2014
It's possible that Sharon McGuire was the first female garbage collector in the city of Milwaukee, but she was definitely one of the very first few.
Published Sept. 27, 2014
Malört, a 70-proof, wormwood-flavored alcohol, has been described as having notes of gasoline, poison, earwax, rotten grapefruit and decaying flesh. Some say the aftertaste is more repulsive than the initial flavor. But not everyone hates the stuff.
Published Sept. 27, 2014
Becky and Scott Berger opened frozen custard shop Yo Mama! in Wauwatosa during the summer of 2011. In June 2014, the Bergers - along with Peg Zanella - opened The Party Room, 7505 Harwood Ave., in the space that was formerly B Green.
Published Sept. 25, 2014
Dennis Erb has always been fascinated by fierce weather conditions, so when he opened his Cudahy-based brew pub he named it Tornado Brewing Co., 3506 E. Layton Ave.
Published Sept. 24, 2014
On Friday, Sept. 26 there will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Café India Bar and Grill at 2201 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. in Bay View.
Published Sept. 23, 2014
10 years in the making, "Hamlet ADD" will debut at the Milwaukee Film Festival. The feature-length film - created by Milwaukee's Andrew Swant and Bobby Ciraldo of "What What (In the Butt)" fame - includes many Milwaukee locations and people, including Mark Borchardt from "American Movie," Dustin "Screech" Diamond and Mark Metcalf from "Seinfeld."
Published Sept. 21, 2014
The ditching of commercial shampoo has become popular enough to gain the moniker "no poo." Could you do it? We found Milwaukeeans who did and and others who simply cannot.