“Why do we call it ‘The Edgewater,’ not ‘the Edgewater Hotel’? Because we look at it as a unique destination.” The hotel rooms are just part of the draw, along with ice skating, unique restaurants, public spaces, and lakefront access, explained Amy Supple, Chief Operating Officer.
A strategic plan was begun in 2007. It called for recognizing the location’s civic connection, recreating a prime downtown asset while acknowledging the history of the out-of-date Edgewater, filling Madison’s need for a variety of hotel rooms, and creating a community asset accessible to the public 365 days a year.
Supple noted that the Faulkner family, who formerly owned and managed the hotel, kept an extensive scrapbook of photos and clippings. Much of that material, along with the black-and-white celebrity photos that decorated the old Cove Lounge, now either hang in the new bar or are displayed digitally on the mixed media wall near the new Statehouse Restaurant.
Many in the room had their own personal remembrances of the old Edgewater and questions of Supple reflected that.
“How are the floors numbered?” Answer: Unlike the old Edgewater with the lobby labeled Floor One and the lakefront down on Floor Seven, the new numbering system starts with lake level as Floor One.
“When will the pier open?” Answer: Construction on the pier, with 40 boat slips open to the public, will begin after fish spawning season for a grand opening on July Fourth.
Once the pier is open, a water taxi will be available to pick up people around Lake Mendota, and drop them at The Edgewater for a meal or a stroll to other downtown destinations.
The meeting concluded with a tour of the property for those interested.
Our thanks to Amy Supple for her presentation to our club this week; to Bill Haight for preparing this review article and to Valerie Johnson for this photo.