Omni releases renderings of proposed 260-foot-tall hotel

Thursday, October 7, 2010 at 12:00pm

Architects of Nashville’s proposed convention center headquarters hotel have released conceptual designs of a building that would be 260 feet tall, making it equivalent to a 25-story structure.

At Thursday’s Convention Center Authority meeting, architects unveiled the first rendering of the new 800-room Omni hotel, designed to anchor the new $585 million Music City Center.

The hotel, to be built along Fifth Avenue, would feature a sky bridge on its fourth floor connecting it to the center.

Other features include an outdoor meeting area, a coffee shop facing the convention center and a restaurant along Korean Veterans Boulevard.

Dallas-based Hill Glazier Studio, the architecture firm designing the hotel, also described a possible connector between the hotel and the Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum’s planned expansion, though parties still haven’t finalized an agreement for the connection.

The authority on Thursday approved an intergovernmental agreement with Omni, effectively signing off on a public-private financing plan for the $273 million hotel.

The agreement will go before the Metro Council later this month for final approval.

31 Comments on this post:

By: NewYorker1 on 10/7/10 at 10:37

I'm disappointed. I was hoping that there will finally be a building over 40 stories.

By: RTungsten on 10/7/10 at 10:41

A big rectangle, how unique.

By: NewYorker1 on 10/7/10 at 10:49

RTungsten, I agree. wow!!! Not much imagination went into this one AT ALL. This is very disappointing.

By: gdiafante on 10/7/10 at 11:02

NY1, I think there's a law on the books that prevents building from being a certain height. That is why there were so many problems with the Signature Tower.

But Nashville should also realize it's Nashville, not New York. A 40 story building would be 25 stories of empty offices.

By: bsutto04 on 10/7/10 at 12:12

Oh my god. My heart just sank -- literally. I had huge hopes for this project. Now I have absolutely nothing to look forward to. It's a rectangle if I've ever seen a rectangle. Great job of blending into the mundane. Way to go.

By: TITAN1 on 10/7/10 at 12:17

I guess some people will complain about anything.

By: bsutto04 on 10/7/10 at 12:26

I compare it to opening up a Christmas present as a kid, and finding a pair of socks. Not complaining - just let down. Not impressed.

By: JeffF on 10/7/10 at 12:28

I assume they saved a lot of money by recycling the design from the Atlanta CNN Omni?

How's all that progressive talk from the hospitality/meeting industry working for you. One tall box sitting next to a large horizontal box on top of and blocking the only real street grid in Nashville. Combine that with the blank walls facing to the south and we have a real architectural "city on a hill."

By: TITAN1 on 10/7/10 at 12:41

I think the MCC design is very impressive.

By: NewYorker1 on 10/7/10 at 12:50

Can the city back out of the deal and let Marriott build the hotel? I liked Marriott's original design better than Omni's.

By: TITAN1 on 10/7/10 at 1:03

The hotel's looks ok, too.

By: producer2 on 10/7/10 at 4:30

Yes but with Marriott, the taxpayer is footing the bill. With Omni, they are paying for it. Don't start acting like JeffF where you get made if it's "taxpayer" funded and then get made when it's not......

By: shinestx on 10/7/10 at 7:09

That design is great... for 1978! Really plain and boxy... very uninspired and makes me think of a typical Las Vegas "warehouse" hotel where the rooms are just as plain as the exterior of the building. Omni knows they have no competition for this convention center, so why should they try to build something that looks great? So please someone tell me what the vertical appendage that looks like an elevator shaft running along the outside of the building is.

By: tomba1 on 10/7/10 at 11:19

This would be a GREAT anchor building for the Deandome at the Fairgrounds but NOT, PLEASE NOT, in the heart of Music City and part of our skyline. It would be a great home for Expos; flea markets; gun, boat, and garden shows; and Christmas events but NOT international conventions and world class events. It is boring, unimaginative and fits better in Memphis or Knoxville. In the immortal words of the late Johnny Cochran at the OJ coronation, "if it doesn't fit, you must" -- FORGET!

If it's worth doing then it's worth doing right and this is neither..

By: bfra on 10/8/10 at 4:14

If they went for something extravagant, the "kickbacks" might have to be reduced!

By: shinestx on 10/8/10 at 6:51

I have heard that Peabody is putting together a site on the opposite side of the Music City Center, and their hotel renderings are much more attractive... with a dramatic spire atop the forth-fifth floor. Of course, Peabody is a marquee brand!

By: JeffF on 10/8/10 at 7:20

No taxpayer money, except for the 60% discount on property taxes (while using more city services that will have to paid for by someone, hmmmm?) and the $20 million per year cash payment and the hotel/motel tax revenue that otherwise would have paid for the MCC but will not come from the General Fund. No taxpayer money at all

62% and rising. The amount of property in downtown not paying any taxes or receiving heavily discounted tax rates.

By: producer2 on 10/8/10 at 8:53

You and George Bush must have the same accountant.

By: Archit on 10/8/10 at 8:54

I wish there were more images but this is indeed uninspired. bsutto04 it's not bad, it's a very nice pair of socks, well detailed and constructed and should last a good long time. I just wish it would knock my current pair of socks off my feet. It amazes me how great opportunities are constantly missed. Opportunities to inspire and excite. Isn't there anything that we as a city can do about things like this that stand so tall and impact the image of our city. There should be a regulation that anything over a certain hieght has to go through a design competition phase or something to control this kind of banality. This is our city we should have a say in it's image. Please understand that this sits right in the middle of the view corridor as one approaches the city from I-65.

By: JeffF on 10/8/10 at 10:12

Accountants are wonderful people and have an understanding of the numbers and know how to get at the real story. Meeting planners are like hookers, what you get from them is not as much as what you give them.

By: airvols on 10/8/10 at 1:01

I agree another box for downtown, when I think of Omni I think of somthing more modern, more colorful. Please at light it with color or something, your going to be the signature hotel for this project.

By: shinestx on 10/8/10 at 2:12

Actually, when I think of Omni, I really do not think of anything special. However, this new owner wants to make it a marquee brand. If this rendering is any sign of their new direction, I don't expect them to be perceived as anything near a premium brand. You have to play "big" if you want to run with the "big dogs".

By: yucchhii on 10/8/10 at 3:45

Well, since there is no mention of monies being used for the MORE IMPORTANT THINGS LIKE "TAKING CARE OF THE HOMELESS" AND GETTING THEM "OFF" THE STREETS, then I guess that means they will just have to "TAKE OVER THE HOTEL" when it's finished!!! Most of you want to BITCH about the "HOMELESS" and catagorizing them as "ALL" bums instead of realizing that there are actual people who ARE REALLY trying to get their lives together again. You want to BITCH about the "HOMELESS" being out there and panhandling from people passing by and you want to BITCH about the "HOMELESS" doing drug deals in the open, when you KNOW that's not true, you just want to make things even MORE miserable for the "HOMELESS" because YOU think YOU'LL NEVER BE "HOMELESS!" You want the "HOMELESS to disappear into thin air, but you KNOW "THAT WON'T HAPPEN" because NOBODY can do that! SO, the "HOMELESS" problem will just continue to get worse untill YOU start tripping on the lumps that were created by sweeping it ALL under the carpet that have been "VISIBLE" for quite sometime now and chose to IGNORE it. So, my question to you all who WANT htis hotel so badly is..."What will you do when you CAN'T IGNORE the situation ANYMORE???? Don't give me the CRAP "That you don't give a dam!" You WILL when it comes time!!!!!!!

By: producer2 on 10/8/10 at 5:04

What is it you use to gauge Omni? Have you looked at any of their other projects or tried to learn anything about their reputation in the hotel industry?

By: shinestx on 10/8/10 at 9:31

I have stayed at their hotels at Atlanta and Las Colinas, and they were about the most bland hotels I've ever stayed in. Of course, I am comparing to the Westin and Four Seasons, where I usually stay in my territory (Philadelphia and NJ). But even the Hyatt is nicer than Omni (especiallly the Grand Hyatts). I have heard that the Omni resorts are quite nice, but I've never stayed at one. The chairman of Omni (I think he's only been in charge for a few years) has said (however) that he wants to beef up the image of the chain. Which I guess is the main reason I'm stunned by this bland box for Nashville. Really, the first thing I thought of was the older (1970s-80s) hotels along the strip in Las Vegas.

By: producer2 on 10/9/10 at 5:49

Rowling bought the company 14 years ago in 1996. Since then they have consistently been rated as one of the best hotels for customer service in the world. One of the issues that is important to the success of this property is the price point for it's rooms. I am sure you find this property will be in line with it's finishes to a mid high end facility much like a JW Marriott or a Westin.

By: shinestx on 10/9/10 at 6:41

Guess it's taken Rowling (didn't even remember his name) longer than I thought. Didn't pay much attention to when he bought the Omni company. I have stayed at the two hotels I mentioned several times in the past 14 years. I repeat: nothing special.

Certainly those Omnis are not on par to even the Grand Hyatts where I've stayed (mid-high end). I think the thing that stuns lots of people here is that they expected a great looking product for $260M. Maybe the later designs will show a more refined (if not inspired) design.

By: JeffF on 10/10/10 at 2:56

87 Four Seasons
87 Ritz-Carlton
83 Renaissance Hotels
79 Inter-Continental Hotels
78 Hyatt Hotels
77 Westin Hotels

83 Disney Resorts
82 Embassy Suites
82 Harrah's
79 Marriott
76 Doubletree Hotels
76 Crowne Plaza
75 Wyndham
74 Hilton
74 Sheraton
74 Omni
71 Radisson
69 Adam's Mark

Omni 3rd from the bottom in CR ratings of "upscale" hotels. Barely beating out Raddison. Dare to dream. They probably come out bad because the concentrate almost entirely on the convention center segment. IF they did not build every property with tax money they may be nicer.

By: nashcurt on 10/10/10 at 11:44

It must have took them about 30 min to come up with that lack luster design! The old convention hotel is 31 floors and 385 ft (125 ft taller then the new) Pretty lame!

By: PillowTalk4 on 10/19/10 at 1:29

I too am disappointed with what is in the rendering. I'm hoping the rendering doesn't reflect details that will become more apparent when completed. The use of various facade material, glass, etc. can make this square look architecturally interesting, but I was hoping for an overall design that would wow viewers as they approach the downtown core, breaking away from the typical box design. This rendering doesn't do that at all. Again, I challenge the architects to think out of the box, look at buidling designs in other countries that are just awe inspiring to see. This cannot be the best design they could come up with. Like someone said, this couldn't have taken no more than 30 minutes to design. There's a parking garage in Reston, VA with an office building on top that looks more interesting. With the contemporary waved roofline of the MCC, I don't know how you decide on a box to anchor it. I would prefer they repeat the Ft.Worth design over this one. But, something that is truly unique is much more preferred. I hope the mayors office and all groups involved reject this plan and require Omni to revisit the design just as the guy who wants to build Signature Tower did. He recognized that the original design was blah at best. Then he had his architects redesign the building and they came up with what would (and hopefully one day will) be a marvel iconic bldg in Nashville, the region and the southeast.

By: PillowTalk4 on 10/19/10 at 1:39

BTW, I wish we could all post our own renderings of what type of building we'd like to see. That woud be interesting. More importantly, I wish the city would require developers to submit multiple designs for major projects like this. It's too easy to just agree with what is handed to you. This building should have been the type of building that people see in a brochure, on a website, etc and say, I've got to go see and stay in the hotel. This design doesn't even come close. It may be for the convention center primarily, but if I'm a hotel operator I would want to ensure that it appeals to a variety of business and leisure travelers.