August 27, 2012
"But man is not made for defeat," he said. "A man can be destroyed but not defeated." Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea
Like Santiago's epic battle with the marlin, the creation of a collection of hotels celebrating America's hard-drinking scribe has been a long time coming. But the day has finally arrived.
The newly announced Hemingway Hotels & Resorts is preparing to develop a group of properties that embrace the intrepid spirit of the famous laureate. The hotels will be location-centric, focused on places that are linked to Hemingway's life like Idaho, Key West, Northern Michigan, the Bahamas, Portugal, Spain and Cuba. Who knows, maybe they'll eventually make it to Kenya.
The idea to build a series of hotels celebrating Papa was first born in the early 2000's; contract negotiations for about seven hotels were underway before the financial crisis hit and put the project on hold. Now, Hemingway Hotels & Resorts is back, led by real estate developer Tuckey Devlin, who seems bound and determined to succeed. The project purportedly plans to include newly-constructed and converted properties - it even has the blessing of the author's family, as well as his estate.
If there's one name hotels like to bandy about, it's Ernest Hemingway. Hemingway slept for two weeks in this room. Hemingway drank for three days at that bar. Hemingway berated the doorman at the whore house next door on multiple occasions...you get the idea.
Of course, each hotel (they'll all be 4-star) will have a library, and restaurants will feature highly. The hotel bars, apparently, will serve Hemingway's favorite cocktails which, as most know, range widely from mojitos to absinthe.
I myself am looking forward to seeing how the project pans out. One thing's for certain - those bar managers have their work cut out for them.
Don't you think?