Omaha welcomes the arrival of Kimpton Cottonwood Hotel

by | 02 Dec 2020 | Hotel Openings, Projects

Following a meticulous restoration by LEO A DALY and DLR Group, Kimpton Cottonwood Hotel – a US$75 million reinvention of Omaha’s Blackstone Hotel – has now opened its doors.

Occupying the former Blackstone Hotel, built in 1915 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1985, the newly unveiled Kimpton Cottonwood Hotel is the latest offering from San Francisco-based Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants and the brand’s first outpost in Nebraska.

After a big-money overhaul overseen by global design firms LEO A DALY and DLR Group, the 205-room property – which is managed by Pivot Hotels & Resorts – represents a major step forward in the revival of the city’s Blackstone District.

A landmark building restored

Inside the building, original details such as hand-carved terracotta columns, a marble staircase, tile and hardwood flooring, and 800-plus windows serve as the bones to a warm and contemporary interior scheme inspired by the calm and reflective lawns of the original Blackstone property.

Overseen by hotel curator Watie White, there are over 50 pieces of artwork in total, all by local Nebraskan artists. These include a standout quilt fashioned from a variety of unexpected materials, like a rusted shower drain and cottonwood leaves, from the original Blackstone Hotel by textile artist Celeste Butler.

Along with 13,500 sq ft of meeting and event space – which includes a revival of the historic Schimmel ballroom with vaulted ceilings – there’s also a seasonal resort-style swimming pool, a solarium, a rooftop terrace with views of downtown Omaha, and five drinking and dining venues helmed by executive chef Ryan Arensdorf that each draw from the hotel’s history.

Culinary comebacks courtesy of Kimpton

A particular highlight on the F&B side is the comeback of the French-inspired Orleans Room. Once one of Omaha’s notable restaurants, the new iteration is an all-day dining spot that serves up a unique spin on the legendary Reuben sandwich, introduced at the original Blackstone Hotel, alongside drinks such as the Cottonwood Pilsner by Scriptown Brewery.

Elsewhere, there’s a café that serves up small bites and local refreshments; The Committee Chophouse, a cosy classic dining spot with dishes like chateaubriand carved tableside; and The Cottonwood Room, a speakeasy with a circular bar.

“The revival of this legacy property captures the spirit of Omaha and we are looking forward to our guests experiencing genuine Midwestern hospitality,” said general manager Mara Bouvier.


San Francisco-based Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, a collection of boutique hotels and chef-driven restaurants, is an acknowledged industry pioneer and was the first to bring the boutique hotel concept to America.