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Think about this: a few members of a hit sitcom get stuck in an elevator and still have access to social media. Can we expect anything other than hilarity and showboating? Probably not. This is exactly what happened when some cast members from the hit TV show, Modern Family were stuck in an elevator during a charity event at the Sheraton Kansas City.
Julie Bowen, Eric Stonestreet, and Jessie Ferguson got cozy with nine other people in the hotel elevator on their way to an event benefiting the Boys & Girls Club of Kansas City, Stonestreet's hometown. The group were stranded for almost an hour and took to Twitter and Vine reach out to the free world for help.
In 1981, the Kansas City Hyatt Regency Crown Center was the site of one of the worst hotel disasters in the country. Around 1,500 people were attending a popular "tea dance" in the lobby, when two overhanging skywalks suddenly collapsed through the ceiling. 114 lives were lost, and over 200 were injured. Now, after 30 years of honoring the victims, headway has been made on the construction of a Skywalk Memorial.
Due to be completed next summer, the structure will sit in Hospital Hill Park, only a block away from the hotel. On Sunday, an emotional crowd gathered for the annual memorial ceremony. To everyone's delight, committee members unveiled an artist's rendering of the monument itself, which features 114 individual lights that will "sparkle" by day and "illuminate" by night.
According to the Kansas City Star, the hotel is a pretty significant part of a scene about halfway through Sacha Baron Cohen's (yes, the Borat dude) Bruno and the staffers at the Phillips are notsohappy about it, because they "signed a waiver under false pretenses."
Every so often we feature a hotel review from one of our readers that we feel should be shared with the rest of you dear hotel guests. These reviews are highlighted because they are timely, about cool hotels in cool places and are relatively level-headed. Think you can submit one just like this? Send it in. Now, we present you with reader Mr. B's review of the Westin Crown Center in Kansas City. Enjoy.
Business took me to the Westin Crown Center in Kansas City Sept 16-20. My 9th floor room was very spacious, bigger than two NYC hotel rooms, even offering excellent desk space. The room came with two queen beds, decked in the Westin's signature heavenly bed ensembles, complete with five pillows each.
Am I plebian for only sleeping on one at a time? A catalog to order the linens et al. was "thoughtfully" provided.
The KC Westin is literally attached to the Crown Center shopping mall, with fun shops like the Crayola store and Kangaroo Crossing, which offers Australian clothing and accessories. Kabuki, a Japanese place offering sushi and Japanese standards, has been a fixture in the mall for years. Across the street from the Mall is Crowne Center plaza, complete with dancing water fountain. It's no Bellagio, but still a very pleasant place.
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If you're looking for an air of history and an easy walk to the new Power and Light entertainment district in Kansas City, stay at Hilton Hotel President or the Hotel Phillips. But if you want a killer view of the skyline, check into an even-numbered room at the Hyatt Regency Crown Center.
The photo here is from room 2416.
This 40-story high-rise has your standard Hyatt set-up and mostly average amenities, but rooms come with an iPod dock alarm clock that cranks out good sound. Plus the WiFi is gratis in the large lobby area, which always makes us happy. You can walk through glass tunnels above the street to the Crown Center shopping and dining area, plus the Hallmark visitor's center is a block away. If you just want to visit for the view, get a reservation at the revolving restaurant on top.
[Fearless Hotel Maven Tim Leffel spends some time in Kansas City, checking out the rebirth of a roaring 20s hotel.]
We love to see an old hotel come back to life, especially when the developer manages to preserve what's great about the original structure, while bringing the rooms up to what we expect in the 21st century.
Kansas City's newest hotel, Hilton President Hotel gets it right. The elegant 1926-era lobby is full of gilded columns, carved cornices, and well, personality. Iron railings and marble extend up to the mezzanine and the refreshingly quirky meeting rooms have original flooring and replica chandeliers.
The rooms are all Hilton modern, so no sacrifices come bedtime. The original room count of 453 was cut down to 213 for the new version, but with fake doors in the hallway showing where all the original rooms were. (To give an idea of how guest expectations have changed, the original President hotel was the first in the city to be able to make ice!)
More on the New (Old) President Hotel post-click.