Joplin’s Robertson Apartments to be transformed into business class hotel

JOPLIN, Mo. – The Robertson Apartments, a more than century old building at 410 S Wall in downtown Joplin will be getting a major facelift.

First built in 1917, the apartment complex was a very popular state of the art building — so state of the art that the popularity remained for several decades.

“Back when it first opened they always had a very lengthy waiting list because people wanted to live there. Due to the amenities and how modern it was at the time and it’s location,” explains Jill Sullivan, Executive Director of the Joplin Post Art Library.

The Robertson had tenants up into the early 2000’s, until the maintenance was let go — and it became uninhabitable. Now some 20 years later, windows are broken and boarded up, bricks are missing from pillars, and weeds are overtaking.

“It’s been a big investment so far.  And it’s gonna be an even more significant investment, yes,” says David Papen, managing member with Experience Management, LLC out of Neosho.

Radisson Hotel Group Americas just signed the building into their Radisson Individuals line of hotels. The company plans to have the building renovated into a business class hotel with 55 rooms and suits, a fitness center, and a 12 hundred square foot meeting space. There will also be technological advantages for professionals on the go, like the ability to hold Zoom meetings already set up in the rooms.

Lori Haun, Executive Director of the Downtown Joplin Alliance, thinks bringing a hotel to downtown is a great idea.

“That’s something we’ve been missing here is to be able to do everything, visitors to do everything in downtown. I think it’s definitely an important piece particularly with like the Cornell Complex coming in and some of the other things that are happening and moving in downtown,” says Haun.

Like Haun says, there’s a lot of momentum in downtown right now. That’s good news for the community — but can make it difficult to find a place to park at times.

“We have a plan in place,” says Papen. We’re not ready to release it, but we’re working with some other adjacent property owners… for some shared parking.. and looking at some other alternatives as well.”

Radisson hopes to have guests coming into the hotel very soon, with an anticipated completion date of Fall 2021.

“I think it’s doable. We built a Hampton Inn in six months one time,” says Papen. “But, we’re not gonna compromise quality or code to get it done. We hope to be able to open it… but if we aren’t then we’ll keep pushing forward.”

You can read the full June 16th press release below:

Minneapolis, MN — June 16, 2021 — Radisson Hotel Group Americas today announced the signing of The Robertson, a member of Radisson Individuals. The hotel holds incredible history for the city and with its anticipated opening in the fall of 2021, it will be the first hotel to open its doors in downtown Joplin in more than 50 years. The hotel was originally built in 1917 by Riley Robertson as an apartment complex. The restored building will bring a breath of fresh air into downtown Joplin while offering a glimpse of the city in the roaring 20s.

“We launched Radisson Individuals in the Americas earlier this year to bring unique, one-of-a- kind hotels into our exceptional portfolio and The Robertson is truly the perfect fit,” said Phil Hugh, chief development officer, Radisson Hotel Group Americas. “This will mark the second hotel for the brand in the Americas and we are thrilled for guests to embrace the nostalgia of an iconic time in our history as this building comes back to life.”

The Robertson, a member of Radisson Individuals will have 55 guest rooms and suites, a fitness center, and 1,200 square feet of meeting space. Guests will feel the 1920s theme throughout the hotel as they enjoy the onsite speakeasy or the cigar bar. Additionally, the hotel is situated in the perfect location within walking distance of downtown Joplin shopping and entertainment.

“It has been a once in a lifetime experience restoring the legacy of Riley Robertson, as he is an incredible figure in Joplin’s rich history making a big impact on this great city and beyond,” said David Papen, managing member, Experience Management, LLC. “The building was truly ahead of its time with minimalist elements including beds that roll away to become desks, along with featuring state-of-the-art fireproof construction and even using solar tubes and central vacuums long before this was introduced to mainstream construction. We are very excited for the day we can open our doors and share this piece of history with our guests as we take them back in time to the 1920s with all the modern conveniences of the 2020s.”

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