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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A $40 million renovation is expected to begin soon on a landmark historic hotel in downtown Des Moines.

The 101-year-old Hotel Fort Des Moines will be turned into a Hilton Hotel boutique inn, the Des Moines Register reported . Hawkeye Hotels purchased the Hotel Fort Des Moines in 2015 for $4 million.

Interior demolition is expected to begin in the next 30 to 60 days, said Raj Patel, chief development officer for Hawkeye Hotels.

“We are still working through final construction details, but I suspect we will have that wrapped up in the next 60 days,” he said.

The renovation will restore and maintain many of the hotel’s historic elements, while updating its 290 rooms with modern designs, officials said. Vintage features such as the marble floors and ornate plaster ceilings will be kept.

One of the largest parts of the project will be the removal of a second floor to expose the lobby’s original two-story ceiling.

“It has been infilled for 50 years. I still cannot envision or imagine what that will look like, but I think it will be breathtaking and enormous,” Patel said. “It will look like it did originally.”

The project will also create a second prominent entrance into the hotel, a courtyard and an updated entry canopy and windows. The hotel’s meeting and ballroom spaces will also be renovated.

Invision Architecture of Des Moines and the New York-based Krause Sawyer interior design firm are also working on the project.

Room prices will likely be at the “top end of the upper scale,” Patel said.

Renovations are expected to be completed by the end of next year.


Information from: The Des Moines Register,