The building that once housed the U.S. headquarters of Shell Petroleum Corp. in downtown St. Louis could soon be a Hilton-brand hotel. Two Hilton-brand hotels, actually.

Developer Reimagine Hospitality is planning to invest $43.2 million into redeveloping the 112,000- square-foot, 13-story Shell Building at 1221 Locust St. in West Downtown into a dual-brand Hilton hotel. The proposed 191-room Home2 Suites-Tru hotel would be the first dual-brand hotel in St. Louis, featuring a combination of 80 conventional and 123 extended-stay guestrooms. More dual branded hotels are popping up across the country as hospitality companies hedge their bets when taking over a large property.

Reimagine purchased the building from RSDB Corp. for an undisclosed amount. The building was 80% vacant at the time of sale, mostly occupied by law offices.

Back when it was first built in 1926, the Art Deco and Late Gothic Revival building served as the headquarters for Royal Dutch Shell’s U.S. subsidiaries under Roxana Petroleum Corp. At the time, St. Louis was the largest city close to the company’s Wood River oil refinery, which opened in 1919.

Shell announced in 1940 it was moving its U.S. headquarters to New York. Around two decades later, Shell relocated its U.S. head office again to downtown Houston at One Shell Plaza, now known as 910 Louisiana St. In 2017, Shell relocated again to company-owned offices about 16 miles west of downtown Houston at 200 N. Dairy Ashford Road.

Since then, the building has been home to a number of different offices, as well as some coworking space in recent years.

The Shell Building is the latest in a long line of hotel proposals planned for downtown St. Louis. According to the city’s tourism board, Explore St. Louis, there are now about a dozen hotels that have just opened or are in the works for the area.

Restoration St. Louis opened Hotel St. Louis in the historic Union Trust Building at 705 Olive St. In April, the owners announced they planned on expanding into the adjacent Chemical Building. Down the street, the LaSalle Building at 501-509 Olive St. is being converted into the 86-room Hotel Indigo. A Live! by Loews hotel is under construction in Ballpark Village and will bring 216 rooms to the entertainment district when work wraps.

“The Tru and Home2 by Hilton brands are a perfect fit for the dynamic, energetic vibe emerging from the reinvigorating of this historic neighborhood,” Kunal Mody, principal at Reminagine Hospitality, said in a statement.

A design team will be led by Campo Architects of New Orleans, which specializes in historic rehabilitation projects. Campo will be complemented by Paric Corp., which will be heading up construction. Access Point Financial, Twain Financial Partners and Rahill Capital provided the financing.

Michael Henja and Dean Burns of Gundaker Commercial represented Reimagine in the deal.


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