‘We are ready’: National Exchange Hotel to officially open Thursday
The National Exchange Hotel will officially open Thursday.
“We are ready,” said Sherry Villanueva, managing partner with Acme Hospitality, which owns and operates the National, on the team’s certainty of the opening date.
She added, however, that the hotel’s team continued to work on final details this week in preparation.
Villanueva emphasized that it was important to those working on the renovation, which went on for over two years, to “dig into the ethos of the local community” as they did so, as well as try to keep “every corner” that they could from the original building.
This theme carried into the planning for the hotel’s new restaurant, Lola, according to Villanueva.
She said the restaurant’s executive chef, Tom Bevitori, “was very, very committed to utilizing as much local product as he could, and really sourcing from local farms, local ranchers, wineries — anywhere we could reach out to try to bring a local influence and create a menu that was uniquely representative of Nevada City and the surrounding environment.”
In a list of over 100 parties — including designers, craftspeople, and contractors — acknowledged by the hotel as having played a part in the renovation process, a large portion is made up of western Nevada County businesses.
“I feel really proud that we were able to participate in the local economy and the local community that way, because I think it’s what’s going to make the hotel even more special,” said Villanueva.
Acme Hospitality also owns and operates the Holbrooke Hotel in Grass Valley.
Villanueva said each hotel was designed with its own unique character in mind. Of the themes which drove many of the design details for the National, she said, “We wanted it to be more feminine, more playful, a little more wild and fun, really.”
‘A SNEAK PEEK’
The hotel announced through social media earlier this week that it would be hosting tours beginning today, with limited space.
According to Villanueva, the decision to host these community open houses today, Sunday, and Monday came from a desire “to allow locals, particularly, a chance to get a sneak peek inside the hotel and be able to take a tour and see many of the rooms and the public areas.”
Free tickets for these tours were made available through Resy — a hospitality app and website which facilitates reservations — and were unavailable as of Friday.
‘ONE OF OUR HISTORIC TREASURES’
Around 50 people gathered in front of the National Exchange Hotel Friday afternoon for a ribbon cutting ceremony, kicking off the final weekend before the hotel officially opens.
Nevada City Mayor Erin Minett spoke at the event, calling the occasion “an amazing time for Nevada City,” adding that the 165-year-old hotel is one of only two downtown Nevada City buildings continuing to operate in its original purpose.
“This grand project to update and fully rejuvenate one of our historic treasures has been grandly and carefully executed, with local labor and craftsmen,“ said Minett.
Villanueva addressed the crowd as well, concluding a speech about the hotel’s lengthy renovation process saying, “Thank you for trusting us, and we give this hotel back to you.”
Victoria Penate is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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