Gibson's former factory in Kalamazoo, Michigan is set to be transformed into a Hard Rock Hotel.
The 103-year-old structure, located at 225 Parsons Street, will be fully redeveloped by the Reverb by Hard Rock company, PlazaCorp Realty Advisors, and the Dora Hotel Company. The hotel has a projected completion date of fall 2023.
The complex at 225 Parsons Street also happens to be the center of operations for Heritage Guitars. However, Guitar.com – which is owned by BandLab, the company that also owns Heritage – confirmed that Heritage's factory will not be disrupted by the new development.
From 1917 through 1984, the 225 Parsons Street complex was Gibson's center of operations, after which the company moved to its current home of Nashville, Tennessee. After Gibson's departure, a number of former Gibson employees rented out part of the former facility and established Heritage Guitars, where to this day they make instruments based on classic Gibson designs.
Hard Rock says that the hotel will feature a gym, bar, brewery and restaurant, banquet facility, an auditorium, and a museum.
For its part, Hard Rock also says it will keep “a keen eye on maintaining the historic parts of the property,” adding that it plans to preserve the facility's “signing room," where scores of legendary guitarists once signed contracts with Gibson.
“We are incredibly excited about our partnership with PlazaCorp Realty Advisors and Dora Hotel Co., allowing Reverb to expand to a prime city in Michigan,” said Todd Hricko, senior vice president of hotel development at Hard Rock International.
“Reverb Kalamazoo is the perfect new location for the Reverb by Hard Rock brand, with several announcements in other major U.S. cities set to be made within the year.”
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Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com and GuitarPlayer.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.