Cityscape

Hotel Phillips to include Italian restaurant, underground ‘speakeasy’

A rendering of the new Tavernonna Italian Kitchen at 12th and Baltimore, which will open later this year in the Hotel Phillips.
A rendering of the new Tavernonna Italian Kitchen at 12th and Baltimore, which will open later this year in the Hotel Phillips.

A new restaurant concept, Tavernonna Italian Kitchen, will open in downtown’s Hotel Phillips later this year.

Tavernonna will “celebrate the rich, varied history of Italian food, wine and cocktails,” according to Arbor Lodging Partners of Chicago, owner of the hotel at 106 W. 12th St. Arbor teamed up with Chicago-based hospitality company DMK Restaurants this summer to develop the new restaurant.

DMK Restaurants was formed in 2009 by industry veteran David Morton and five-time James Beard Award nominee Michael Kornick. Kornick plans to use fresh ingredients sourced from local farms and vendors for both traditional and contemporary dishes.

Menu items will include house-made focaccia with honey ricotta and house-made jams for breakfast; BLT flatbread for lunch; raw bar with daily oyster selections, fluke and salmon for happy hour; house-made ravioli with goat cheese and mint pesto for dinner; and chocolate with Tuscan olive oil and sea salt on grilled bread for dessert.

Arbor acquired the 217-room hotel in the heart of downtown Kansas City in October. It has been open while undergoing a floor-by-floor renovation since April. The renovation is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Hotel Phillips also will have a new street-level coffee shop, Kilo Charlie’s, and underground “speakeasy” called P.S. featuring local musicians and handcrafted cocktails and spirits.

A New Jersey-based architecture and design firm, KKAD, is undertaking the redesign, which it describes as “comfortable luxury” that “reinvents a historic landmark for the 21st century guest.”

Hotel Phillips opened in 1931 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In early 2017 it will become part of the Curio by Hilton, an upscale hotel group. The hotel is being managed by NVN Hotels, an Arbor Lodging affiliate.

“I see business travelers loving it, local business wanting to bring their customers here. I see leisure — people wanting to go to concerts staying at the hotel or eating at the hotel,” said Richard Chanofsky, who is originally from New York but recently relocated from Texas to serve as general manager of Hotel Phillips. “Our job is to restore it to its golden era.”

Joyce Smith: 816-234-4692, @JoyceKC

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