The Central Plaza Hotel – a sleeping giant that will soon wake up
July 23 – CHEYENNE – Just give it nine months. You won’t recognize the place.
The Central Plaza Hotel, a longtime downtown Cheyenne property located along Central Avenue, has for years been a short-term living space for low-income residents or contact employees, such as construction or oil drilling workers.
It is also a place that has been in poor condition for the past few years.
The once-vibrant paint colors fade in sunlight, the metal rusts, the interior was outdated, and the indoor pool, located in a separate structure from the five-story motel, hasn’t been used for at least 20 year.
“The building was commissioned by Union Pacific, and it was slated for when the guys got off the train at the depot, they just got off here, and that’s where they lay down,” Cory Lynn Loghry said. co-owner of the Hotel. “So it was very well known as a railroad location for years and years. Then it got a bit run down.”
Loghry, which owns and operates Lynn Buys Houses and Lynn Manages Houses, purchased the location in March. The bank was unenthusiastic about the venture, especially after seeing how much it would cost, but Loghry saw the potential.
In just over 29 days, she and her business partner and co-owner, Carter Ward, owner of Ward’s Insulation and Concrete Lifting, managed to transform the ground floor of Central Plaza into a French-infusion restaurant by the name of Paris West.
They were hoping to find someone interested in owning and operating the restaurant space, someone with a concept that matched their own vision for Central Plaza.
No suitor showed up.
Loghry and Ward took matters into their own hands.
“We were contacted by others for the bar and restaurant. It sounds posh, but we really wanted something cool, and the others weren’t very cool,” she said. “Everyone said, ‘You’re crazy. You could make money today without doing all that work.’ But it just wasn’t the vibe we wanted for the property.”
The restaurant will offer a mix of French and Western cuisine. It is overseen by Chef Kent Cottle, founder of Go Fuel Cafe, who chose to bring his talents to Paris Ouest rather than a potential attempt in Nashville, and Chef Vy, who studied the art of French pastry in Paris for several years.
They try to avoid any pretense, if possible. Even though it will be trendy and even though it serves French cuisine, Paris Ouest should be a place where people can stop, order a Jack and Coke and fit in among the beset customers at a night out. romantic.
Paris West is just the start of their project, and a relatively small aspect of a larger concept.
In nine months, the 85 rooms that make up the Central Plaza Hotel will be transformed into an affordable studio complex.
The lobby, currently partially renovated, is one of the first spaces in the building to receive a new mid-century modern style. Ultimately, there will be an ax shooting range, an indoor dog park – one floor of the complex will accommodate pets – and a rooftop bar that operates under the license of Paris Ouest.
By the time Loghry and Ward showed the Wyoming Tribune Eagle on the premises, crews were repairing the elevator, painting the chairs for the soft opening of Paris Ouest and disposing of destroyed appliances and structural disrepair from the upper balconies to a truck full of discarded insulation and motel gear.
The restaurant, meanwhile, opened on Friday for Cheyenne Frontier Days.
Most of the time, every part of the motel was broken, measured, drilled or discussed by a construction specialist branch. They passed documents to each other and provided updates to Loghry and Ward. There was, however, a bedroom on the second floor which was almost complete.
It was an old hotel room, now remodeled in mid-century modern style into a one bedroom, one bathroom studio. The small space has room for a bed, a functional kitchenette, a bathroom, a sofa and a TV.
When they first went to work on this staging room, original 1960s wallpaper covered the walls, early 2000s TVs sat on wooden dressers, and linens were visibly worn and aged. .
All the outdated appliances and conveniences are now piled high where the ax throwing range will be, like an eclectic graveyard of long-forgotten hotels.
“The previous owners were great people,” Loghry said. “There are just people who have a big dream and maybe don’t have the tools to make it happen. They wanted to do something really great, but they realized that the dream they had for it was n It wasn’t something they were going to be able to come true.”
The real work is updating the outdated internal aspects of the building, where Ward’s responsibilities come in. The structural integrity of Central Plaza is solid.
“It’s not really my thing,” Loghry said, waving at Ward. “I called him and said, ‘Would you like to come see this and see what you think?’ Just from that conversation, he said, “It’s something I’ve always wanted to be a part of.”
“We didn’t really intend to do this together, but it’s been a phenomenal fit.”
Ward’s main focus is the installation of a new ventilation system, electrical wiring, underground parking for residents and the addition of carbon fiber wrap to stabilize the balconies that line the exterior of each floor. .
Without these structural renovations, the owners would do little more than dress the building in a fresh coat of paint, only for it to eventually crumble.
Loghry and Ward were granted a prime location, so the future apartment complex must achieve a certain degree of longevity by capturing and fostering community spirit among its tenants. It will be the first large studio apartment building to serve the downtown area in recent years.
“When we opened, before we started doing anything, about 30 guys here from the refinery were flipping around,” Loghry said. “They were from Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana, and they came here to barbecue in the parking lot every night.
“That’s exactly what we hope will happen here.”
Will Carpenter is an arts and entertainment reporter for the Wyoming Tribune Eagle. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone at 307-633-3135. Follow him on Twitter @will_carp_.