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Michaelson, Bareilles Anchoring Hotel Cafe Tour

Red-hot singer/songwriters Ingrid Michaelson and Sara Bareilles will anchor the lineup for the fourth annual Hotel Cafe tour, which begins March 6 at the Belly Up in San Diego.

By Mitchell Peters

Mitchell Peters

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Red-hot singer/songwriters Ingrid Michaelson and Sara Bareilles will anchor the lineup for the fourth annual Hotel Cafe tour, which begins March 6 at the Belly Up in San Diego, and wraps April 12 at the Henry Fonda Theater in Los Angeles. Cary Brothers, Joshua Radin, Meiko and Kate Havnevik are also on the bill. Inspired by the singer/songwriter communal vibe of Hollywood, Calif.’s 200-capacity Hotel Cafe, a coffee shop-turned-music venue for which the tour is named, this year’s approximately 35-date jaunt also features rotating performances from Jim Bianco, Dan Wilson, William Fitzsimmons, Priscilla Ahn and Jessie Baylin. “This tour is as unique an experience for the performers as it is for the audience,” Brothers tells “Every night, lineups and songs change so we never know what to expect.” Brothers is particularly excited to tour with Michaelson, whose Old Navy sweater commercial song “The Way I Am” helped boost her profile last year. “Ingrid’s become a good friend and a big part of the growing Hotel Cafe family in the last year, and I can’t wait to roll out across the country with her and all of the artists we have scheduled this year,” Brothers says. About 15 acts will appear on various dates, but only six perform each night. A permanent traveling house band backs the musicians as they perform two 15- to 20-minute sets. Past Hotel Cafe treks have also seen surprise performances in various cities from such artists as Weezer, John Mayer, Jason Mraz, Amos Lee, Death Cab For Cutie and KT Tunstall. After completing dates in North America, the tour will immediately visit the United Kingdom, and later travel through cities in Europe and Japan. Tickets for Stateside performances go on sale Jan. 9.

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The Hotel Cafe Tour

Best known for serving up mellow singer-songwriters, the Hotel Cafe tour continues to mine that well-worn niche in its third outing.

By Matthew Kivel

Matthew Kivel

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Best known for serving up mellow singer-songwriters, the Hotel Cafe tour continues to mine that well-worn niche in its third outing. Operating in a loose and unassuming manner befitting an open-mic night, performers ambled onstage and ran through abbreviated sets, often accompanied by a four-piece backing band. Most of the singers relied heavily on ballads and down-tempo material, establishing a sleepy, after-hours ambiance that seemed to pervade even the most upbeat efforts.

Known primarily for his song “Blue Eyes,” from the “Garden State” soundtrack, Cary Brothers drew the largest crowd of the evening. He took the band through a brisk set of emotion-driven pop that remained frustratingly narrow in its musical approach. Multi-instrumentalist Brad Gordon was underutilized during Brothers’ set, but for most of the evening, Gordon acted as a Jon Brion-esque jack of all trades — garnishing the understated tunes with tasteful bits of trumpet, accordion, keyboard and clarinet.

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For all the dour and depressed confessionals performed through the night, Ingrid Michaelson delighted the audience with an unexpected foray into standup comedy. Taking aim at herself and the stereotypes of the singer-songwriter genre, Michaelson prefaced many of her songs with hilarious, off-the-cuff banter. One of her finest moments came during a song introduction in which she sarcastically cited Sarah McLachlan, Georgia O’Keeffe and women’s liberation as the catalysts for her writing.

Other notable acts included Jim Bianco, whose boozy, Tom Waits-derived vocal style allowed the band to open up and explore jazz-based textures and rhythms, and Greg Laswell.

The 30-city tour stops Thursday in Austin, Texas, at SXSW and continues through the South before hitting New York’s Fillmore @ Irving Plaza on March 24 and returning home on April 12 for a finale at the Music Box.

Hotel Cafe; 120 capacity;$20 top

  • Production: Presented by Cary Brothers and the Hotel Cafe. Reviewed March 9, 2008.
  • Cast: Performers: Ingrid Michaelson, Cary Brothers, Jason Kanakis, Jonathan Flaugher, Marco Meneghin, Brad Gordon, Greg Laswell, Jim Bianco, Jessie Baylin, Kevin Devine, Allie Moss, Meiko, Kate Havnevik, Priscilla Ahn, Buddy, Holly Conlan.

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Last Night: The Hotel Cafe Tour At House Of Blues

The Hotel Cafe Tour House Of Blues October 16, 2008

Better Than: Staying at home, watching Grey’s and washing my hair, both of which I love and one of which is soundtracked by several of the Hotel Café girls' songs--but I’ll leave it up to you to guess which.

Ingrid Michaelson, the way she is. (Courtney Clenney)

Maybe you already know that the House of Blues is like an opera house with its exclusive balcony, vaulted ceilings, man-eating-flower wallpaper and theater curtains.

Good for you, but, before last night's Hotel Cafe show at the venue, I was a HOB virgin.

And, at least in terms of presentation, this was a weird show. Instead of having each artist come out, perform a set and move out of the way as the night progresses from unknown to headliner, this show was more like a showcase--each of the five artists on the bill performed two short sets throughout the evening as the ladies of the tour ( Laura Jansen , Meiko , Erin McCarley , Priscilla Ahn and Ingrid Michaelson ) shuffled on and off the stage to make way for one another's performances.

Opening the show was Jansen--but I walked in late the first time she played and completely missed her after the intermission, too, though. Damn you HOB for being non-smoking. No idea how she was.

But I did see the rest of the performers--including Meiko, whose set I was fairly excited about beforehand . Unfortunately, her three-song opening set wasn’t really working; she opened with an acoustic guitar song and it

At this point in the show, it didn’t seem the crowd was really feeling her vibe. But, hey, it was early. By her second set, maybe the crowd had had a few, or maybe I had two, things were much better. The acoustic performance of her folksie iTunes hit “How Lucky We Are,” made me sing—out loud, actually. Her staccato vocals and soothing musical qualities, coupled with her shifty feet and funny lip movements, made for an endearing set.

Erin McCarley was up after Meiko the first time around. And, get this, apparently McCarley is from Garland! Her fam was in the audience, too--which could have been why this lady seemed to be the first to inspire the crowd out of it’s coma. I wasn’t too impressed with her tunes before the show, but I will say that, live, this gal knows how to get a crowd going--or as going as her slow and melodic songs could get them. I think I've been converted into a fan, too: Before too long, I was tapping my toes and swaying along…so were others, I promise! She had some twangy-ness in her sound and it was pretty awesome. Bonus: Her guitar strap had a ton of feathers on the back--I’m talking like Native American headdress here.

But Priscilla Ahn and her simultaneous guitar playing and harmonica blowing were a highlight of the evening for me (even though I'd come to this show for Michaelson--more on her later, though). Oh, and this girl is funny . Like LOL funny. Come to think of it the whole set kind of felt like a comedy musical show: She played a song about boobs, with a kazoo. It’s worth hearing . Later, Ahn toned things down a bit, getting into some swirly, pretty music, but, whether the song is a slow ballad or a satire, Ahn has the fullest and purest voice I’ve heard in a while. Definitely a fan.

Last, but not least in the slightest, Ingrid Michaelson came out, and, in true form, was wearing a funky hat and glasses, joking about how everyone else might be skinny but she was the one with the boobs. A lot of boob talk going on last night.

A lot of chatter, too. After an audience member shouted at her to play one of her own songs, Michaelson joked, “I wrote ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow,’ you didn’t know that?” Then she belted out a ukulele acoustic cover of the song that made me believe she could fly over the damn rainbow.

Michaelson, like a couple others at last night’s show has the ability to make the audience believe they can see straight through to the artist’s soul. Also, she started her hit “The Way I Am,” by doing a rendition of “Ice, Ice Baby,” and then going into the theme song for Fresh Prince of Bel-Air . Somehow she brought it back to “The Way I Am,” (props to the band on that one, I guess).

Michaelson also proved to be as comedic as she is musically talented. She dubbed the Hotel Café tour this year as “The Hotel Vagina Tour.”

[ Editor's Note: In case, yknow, just by reading this review, you couldn't tell... ]

Overall, the only reason guys were needed last night was for text messaging the lyrics of the songs to…they love that, I think. -- Courtney Clenney

Critics Notebook: Personal Bias: I dig chick music (I’m pulling the ‘I can say this cuz I are one’ card).

Random Note: The mic-changer-outer-guy (we’ll just call him Jason because I could never quite figure out what his last name was) who also doubled as part of the band was really pretty lame with his clown-like antics while changing out mics and tech stuff in between performances. The circus music was not necessary. Plus, he had on a Motörhead shirt. How much do you think he was digging being on the “Hotel Vagina Tour?”

By The Way: I was pretty pissed there were only a handful of tables and chairs at the venue.C’mon, HOB! These gals are a kind of sit-and-ponder type show, not a stand up and head bang thing…How bout some more seats? My toes hurt.

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Sing: The Hotel Cafe Tour Documentary

Sing: The Hotel Cafe Tour Documentary (2010)

Sing celebrates the Hotel Cafe musicians, their friendships and music, and explores how the venue and tour impacted the careers and lives of the artists through the lens of the 2008 Tour. Sing celebrates the Hotel Cafe musicians, their friendships and music, and explores how the venue and tour impacted the careers and lives of the artists through the lens of the 2008 Tour. Sing celebrates the Hotel Cafe musicians, their friendships and music, and explores how the venue and tour impacted the careers and lives of the artists through the lens of the 2008 Tour.

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This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here .

Concert Review: Hotel Cafe Tour @ Henry Fonda Theater, 4/12/08

hotel cafe tour

39 days • 12 musicians • 1 bus

Though this may sound like the setup for “The Real World: Singer-Songwriter Edition,” it’s actually the description of the Hotel Cafe Tour—a traveling showcase of some of the best musical talent in the country, most of whom are LA residents and regulars at the Hotel Cafe on Cahuenga.

You might think that with so many creative people packed into such a small space, drama would naturally follow. Surprisingly, nothing could be further from the truth. Not only do the singers all get along, but they also seem to genuinely support each other. But it’s not all serious—this group knows how to have a good time, and LAist got a backstage perspective of the Hotel Cafe Tour during one of their last North America tour stops at the Henry Fonda Theater on April 12.

The backstage area was a hive of activity, and there was usually a group hanging out and having fun in the lounge area. At one point, Cary Brothers accidentally got a stain on his shirt, and Jesca Hoop was more than happy to fix the situation by drawing a tiny cartoon over it. A few minutes after that, Joshua Radin noticed a skateboard propped up against a chair, and even though he hadn’t skateboarded since he was in his early teens, he attempted an ollie to see how much air he could get (and it was pretty impressive, considering).

hotel cafe tour

The show began at 9 p.m. and lasted well past midnight. Given the number of performers, the Hotel Cafe Tour did a great job of mixing things up—each artist performed for 10-20 minutes each, with some returning later in the show for a second set. Thanks to a talented backup band (Jason Kanakis on guitar, Jonny Flaugher on bass, Brad Gordon on keyboards/trumpet and Marco Meneghin on drums) the show continued without interruption.

Following are a few highlights from the evening: Greg Laswell got the night off to a great start with songs from his last full-length album, Through Toledo and his new EP, How the Day Sounds . Laswell was followed by Priscilla Ahn , who took the stage with a guitar, harmonica and even a kazoo, which she used on “The Boob Song” and really got the audience cheering.

William Fitzsimmons took the stage next, and showcased his humor in between some rather entrancing songs. Then he invited surprise guest Joshua Radin up on the stage to sing a cover of “Cecelia” by Simon & Garfunkel.

Meiko followed, in the first of two sets. During the night, she had to contend with a rogue mic stand, but handled the situation with humor. Although her song “Reasons to Love You” was an audience favorite, another highlight was her sampling of TLC’s “No Scrubs” as she closed out one of her sets.

Jim Bianco also played twice on Saturday night, and really got the crowd going with a high-energy performance that included him playing one of his bandmate’s guitars with his teeth and a random eruption of confetti. One memorable moment was he performed his sultry song “I’ve Got a Thing for You” while bathed in red light. His second set brought together most of his tourmates—and they ventured out into the packed crowd to perform his new song, “Sing.”

Jessie Baylin’s sets consisted of songs from her upcoming CD, Firesight . Highlights included an old favorite, “Contradicting Words” and a “The Glitter,” a song about her early experiences in Los Angeles.

At this point, it would probably be good to mention something that the audience wasn’t able to see. Rather than heading back to the dressing rooms after their own performances, the other artists would position themselves off to the side of the stage, behind the curtain, to support their friends. At various times you could see people dancing, mouthing lyrics and clapping for whomever was singing.

hotel cafe tour

Ingrid Michaelson’s two sets showed off both her musical ability and her sense of humor. Near the beginning of her first set, she heard a harmonica in the audience and ended up extending one of her songs to give the audience member a chance to play a (surprisingly good) solo.

Songs like “Die Alone” and “The Way I Am” were as great as expected, but her cover of Radiohead’s “Creep” was definitely another highlight. Just as she was beginning the song, however, one of her fellow songwriters yelled out “Look what I can do!” (in an imitation of Michael McDonald’s “Stuart” character from MadTV). This caused Michaelson to start giggling and she had to start again. Another fun moment was when Michaelson invited the gals from the tour (along with her backup singer Allie Moss ) to sing her song “The Chain” in a round because, as she said, "there just aren’t enough rounds nowadays."

Cary Brothers has a voice that can really fill a room and songs like “Who You Are” showcased his range. He also involved some of friends during his two sets, such as Radin’s turn on the electric guitar during “Ride," Michaelson joining him on vocals for a cover of the Thompson Twins’ “If You Were Here," and the whole group joining him for “Blue Eyes.”

Jesca Hoop was up next with songs from her album, Kismet (plus some new material if I’m not mistaken). During her set, one of her fellow artists exclaimed backstage, “It is just amazing how good she is!”

After some of the artists sang a second round, the three and a half hour show concluded with most of them coming together for a sweet rendition of “The Rainbow Connection.”

hotel cafe tour

After the show, LAist caught up with Cary Brothers for a short follow up to his earlier interview :

LAist: What are you going to miss most now that the North American tour is coming to a close?

"The camaraderie of the tour is what I will miss most. I love playing solo shows, but there’s something wonderful about the feeling that everyone has to play together like a team to make the whole night work. It’s more of a challenge, and when it does work, there’s something even more satisfying about that than a typical gig.”

What was your favorite memory from the tour? “Well, the homecoming show at the Fonda was my favorite show for sentimental reasons and because everyone really brought their ‘A’ game that night. As far as single moments, I loved everyone sitting backstage in Madison and watching Dan Wilson play his hit [with Semisonic] ‘Closing Time’ and explain, line by line, that it had nothing to do with being at a bar but was actually about the birth of his child. All of us fellow performers were turned into drop-jawed music fans for that one moment, and it also showed how great a songwriter that guy is. Friendship and love of music is what this tour is really about.”

The Hotel Cafe Tour ended its North American leg at the El Rey on the 13th before heading to Europe. For those who missed this year’s tour, there’s still hope—a number of the singer-songwriters are regulars at the Hotel Cafe and will have individual concerts in the coming months. To view a schedule, visit the Hotel Cafe website .

Keep checking this site for more information, as over the next few weeks, LAist will be featuring interviews with Jim Bianco, William Fitzsimmons, Jessie Baylin, Greg Laswell and more.

Photo essay coverage: Hotel Cafe Tour 2008 w/ Greg Laswell, Priscilla Ahn, William Fitzsimmons & Joshua Radin

Hotel Cafe Tour 2008 w/ Meiko, Jim Bianco & Jessie Baylin

Special thanks to the artists and management of the Hotel Cafe Tour as well as the Henry Fonda Theater staff.

Photos by Koga for LAist

Small houses nestled in a hillside along a river in Zdiar, Slovakia

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Sing: The Hotel Cafe Tour

Audience reviews, cast & crew.

Laura Crosta

Moscow Bike TOur

  • Page active




  • Find adventure at every turn
  • Take pride in covering Moscow in record time
  • Enjoy the icons in style
  • Explore off the beaten path routes of Moscow
  • Expert commentary as you travel around the city
  • Test your nerve, driving on crazy Russian roads
  • Get an Endorphin Rush
  • Savour delicacies from different regions of Russia in a traditional restaurant

Only in Moscow for a short time and want to get the most out of the city and have fun? Then a 3-hour bike tour in Moscow is what you need! You won’t hear much about Russian history or become an expert on Russian art, but you will experience all the rest of Russian culture! This tour gives you a unique perspective of a little bit of everything in 3 or 5 hours: must-see tourist sights, local hangouts, Russian food, a glimpse of the modern Moscow life, amazing photo opportunities, a bit of Russian history, and a lot of fun!

This is a great opportunity to cut the usual all day tour down to only 3 or 5 hours and get the most out of the city while having fun and being fit in the greatest locations around Moscow!

A bike trip is sure to capture your heart. It enables you to see the heart of Moscow within the Boulevard Ring and to explore some non-touristic areas of the city, to get an image of the city centre and to work out at the same time.

Our tours differ and depend on whether you are interested in city scenery or nature-like landscape. A variety of places in Moscow are great for riding a bike: these are large parks, yards with old mansions, and historical streets in the centre.

Let’s see what’s waiting for you!

Here are 4 suggested itineraries for a 3-hour tour:.

Moscow Bike Route #1

St. Basil's Cathedral, GUM, Kazan Cathedral, State Historical Museum and Lenin's Mausoleum

Revolution Square and Theatrical Square

Bolshoy Theatre, Metropol Hotel, Chinese Wall, State Duma of Moscow

Alexander Garden

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, fountains, the Grotto, Central Exhibition center, Kutafya tower, Kremlin wall and towers

Historic City Center

Tverskaya street with its beautiful historical architecture, China town (Kitai-gorod), an old historical area of Moscow

Beautiful  City bridge  leading to  Gorky Park  with scenic views of  Christ the Savior  cathedral and the Moscow River. Explore all the beauties riding a bike along the riverside pathways.

Sculpture Park

Peaceful  Crimean embankment  is one of the quietest area of Moscow city with painters' works at the  Vernisage , close proximity to new  Tretyakov Gallery  and good views of  Christ the Savior Cathedral ,  Peter the Great  monument and the Crimean bridge.

Delicious lunch at a café/restaurant

Arbat street + Stalin Skyscraper

The  Arbat  has existed since at least the 15th century and is proud of being the oldest surviving street of the Russian capital. Nowadays, it is now an entertainment and event mecca for Muscovites and tourists alike.

Victory park

Get thrilled with 142 metres  Obelisk  and  Victory Park museum , which is an open-air museum dedicated to the Russian victory of 1945, built in 1995 to celebrate 50 years of victory

Moscow Bike Route #2

Pyatnitskaya street - the Tretyakov Gallery - Luzhkov Bridge - the Cathedral of Christ the Savior - the Gogolevsky Boulevard - the Nikitsky Boulevard - the Tverskoy boulevard - Teatralnaya street - the Bolshoi Theatre – the Kitai - Gorod - Red Square and GUM store - the Bolshoi Moskvoretsky Bridge

This route is the best one if you want to see the heart of Moscow. It goes right through the major places of interest and touches upon the most exciting and vibrant areas of Moscow such as part of the Boulevard Ring, which is absolutely loved by everyone.

Cozy streets of Zamoskvorechye will never leave you indifferent. This district has a long and vivid history and is full of old baroque houses along with Stalinist buildings. It includes three theatres, three museums and sixteen churches.

Back in the 18 th century Zamoskvorechye was known as a quiet, country-like land of single-storey houses and conservative businessmen. It remained country-like and is much more filled with business than before, as this area is just right in the city centre.

You’ll learn:

  • what was previously on the site of the Novokuznetskaya metro-station;
  • names of four abandoned metro stations and how to find these stations;
  • what is the oldest bridge among all the bridges in Moscow;
  • how old was Pavel Tretyakov when he decided to collect paintings, that are now exhibited in the Tretyakov gallery;
  • what does the real form of the Boulevard Ring in Moscow look like;
  • what tricks did the Russian government used to save the houses and buildings from bombing during the World War II;
  • what unofficial name the Bolshoi Moskvoretsky bridge has

Moscow Bike Route #3

View over the Kremlin - The Luzhkov Bridge –  The Strelka Institute –  The Muzeon Park –  The Gorky Park –  Neskuchny Garden –  Sparrow Hills –  The Luzhniki Stadium -  Novodevichy Convent – The Arbat Street – The Gogolevsky boulevard - The Cathedral of Christ the Savior –  The Bolotnaya Square

This route includes the most popular city-sights and goes along the Moskva-River. It starts with an observation point, from which you may enjoy the view over the Kremlin, and covers all the most beautiful green areas of Moscow. Historical sites are included into the route so you can feel the historical vibes of ancient Moscow.

  • where is hidden an island Moscow;
  • where in Moscow you can get printed music of the most sweet masterpieces like “Chocolate waltz” and “Cake-gallop” along with a box of chocolates of the 18 th century;
  • why the Luzhkov bridge is also called “the bridge of kisses”;
  • the place where the famous Olympic symbol – the Olympic Bear of the Olympics-1980 was flown from;
  • the stage where Rolling Stones and Madonna performed when they came to Moscow;
  • why the Krymsky bridge was Stalin’s favourite bridge and what musical instrument it represents;
  • where living statues in Moscow could be found in 1740s;
  • myths and legends about inhabitants of the main building of Moscow State University;
  • story about why Sparrow Hills were called that way;
  • how Napoleon was cheated when he was going to burn down the Novodevichy convent;
  • what was supposed to be on the site where the Cathedral of Christ the Savior is now;
  • why Moscow was nearly burnt down in the 15 th century and which role the Arbat street played in it.

Moscow Bike Route #4

Starting with wide area of the VDNKh, you are to learn interesting and fun facts about this spectacular part of Moscow.

  • where is a hidden the secret bunker under Moscow (and no, it’s not a famous Bunker 42 everybody knows about;
  • why the number of golden statues at the fountain is more than the number of Soviet republics, although it is said to correspond them;
  • why one of the Stalin statues was called “matryoshka” (Russian doll);
  • what was Picasso’s favourite statue at the exhibition in Paris in 1937.

You’ll see:

  • the world’s first light-music fountain that was built in 1950-1954;
  • pavilions that symbolize Soviet republics;
  • the Botanic garden which is twice as big as the Principality of Monaco;
  • the largest green-house in Europe (for the opening day in 1945);
  • English garden at the Ostankino mansion;
  • Ostankino Tower, one of the tallest structures in Europe;
  • the most beautiful flowers in hidden places of the parks.

Biking through VDNKh, Botanic garden and the territory of the Ostankino park will definitely be appreciated by nature-lovers and all those who are keen on speed, who knows no limits and want to explore off the beaten path of Moscow.

We can customize your bike adventure to meet your individual interests.

Our bicycle tour in Moscow gives you a chance to have a s pectacular ride  with  wonderful photo opportunities  and an  unforgettable cultural experience!

What you get:

  • + A friend in Moscow
  • + Private & customized tour
  • + An exciting tour, not just boring history lessons
  • + An authentic experience of local life
  • + Flexibility during the tour: changes can be made at any time to suit individual preferences
  • + Amazing deals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the very best cafes & restaurants. Discounts on weekdays (Mon-Fri)
  • + A photo session amongst spectacular Moscow scenery that can be treasured for a lifetime
  • + Good value for souvenirs, taxis, and hotels
  • + Expert advice on what to do, where to go, and how to make the most of your time in Moscow

*This tour can be modified to meet your preferences

Write your review

Historic Flat Iron Hotel, Luminosa restaurant open in downtown Asheville

hotel cafe tour

ASHEVILLE - Days before its public debut, The Flat Iron Hotel was abuzz with staff and contractors putting the finishing touches on the historic downtown landmark.

A top coat of polish was worked into the preserved original lobby floors, new recipes were tested for dishes considered for the menu of the Italian-inspired restaurant, and final adjustments were underway in rooms and suites as the hospitality staff prepared to welcome the first guests.

It’s been years in the making but the Indigo Road Hospitality property will open an adaptive reuse boutique with awe-inspiring designs, views and experiences for locals and guests to the city.

On May 15, The Flat Iron Hotel will officially open at 20 Battery Park Ave. after construction delays.

“We’ve been training for a whole year for this part of it,” said Executive Chef Graham House, who is leading culinary operations with fellow Asheville local, Chef de Cuisine Sean McMullen.

The hotel offers six guest floors with 71 rooms, three food and beverage concepts, a conference room and a coworking office. Plus, amenities like the premium concierge services.

The Flat Iron Building, constructed in 1926 and modeled after the famed flatiron-shaped building of the same name in New York, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The skyscraper was a retail and office building and home to WWNC, Asheville’s first radio station that broadcasted from the ninth floor.

Interior architecture and design firm Mey & Co and local architecture firm Rowhouse Architects led the extensive renovation to preserve its original Art Deco design and transform it into The Flat Iron Hotel.

The Flat Iron Hotel aims to awe visitors from its rooftop bar with vista views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and downtown to its ground-level café and restaurant to the Prohibition Era-style speakeasy with secret entryways hidden in the former basement boiler room.

“I’m super stoked. It’s been a long time coming,” McMullen said. “Having our live fire going and being able to work with local farmers again is awesome.”

The Flat Iron Hotel team took the Citizen Times on a rooftop-to-basement tour of The Flat Iron Hotel and shared what makes the property a standout.

Enter The Flat Iron Hotel

The grand entrance on Battery Park Avenue leads to an intimate lobby where guests can check in and out, request a classic luggage cart, or receive guidance from the concierge at the reception desk.

The Wedge Brewing Company has partnered with The Flat Iron Hotel to brew the Flat Iron Italian Pilsner, which will be offered to guests at check-in.

Director of Outdoor Experiences Zach Girgenti said guests may request custom experiences in and around Asheville for individuals, groups and families in advance. Options include an in-house bar crawl, hiking, foraging, kayaking, intimate dining experiences and cooking classes off-site, and a wine tasting at an area vineyard with a 50-mile scenic helicopter ride over the city.

“Creating experiences where you can feel that not only is it easy to do but it’s memorable, it lasts a lifetime,” Girgenti said.

Girgenti recommends contacting the hotel to begin the process at least a week before a planned stay.

Stay, work at The Flat Iron Hotel

General Manager Jeff Elstro said two original antique elevators ― expected to be active by September ― have been restored and fortified with modern components and will be manually operated by an elevator attendant.

A modern automatic elevator is operational, too.

Floors three to eight have guest rooms and suites positioned along the angular hallways of the triangular-shaped building.

Mey & Co’s Principal Carrie Dessertine and Studio Director Dana Jaasund designed the guest rooms and suites with original elements like the preserved transom windows and classic prewar bathrooms while modernizing the areas with complementary colorful, custom furniture and hand-drawn wallcoverings.

Each floor features the original doors painted with former office tenants' names with plaques detailing the businesses' history.

Elstro said another unique touch is the butler pantry-style rooms on each guest floor that allow quick access to ice, sparkling water, coffee and other beverages.

On the second floor, the Iron Works coworking office offers shared desks and podcast recording capabilities for daily, weekly and monthly rental for hotel guests and locals.

The Flat Iron Hotel offers various spaces for private bookings for meetings and events, including a partitioned apex dining room in Luminosa.

Luminosa restaurant and café

Adjacent to the lobby is Luminosa ― an Italian-style restaurant by night and café by day with an open-air patio off Battery Park Avenue.

The dining room is designed as a warm, chic tavern with classic tables, banquettes and a bar.  The wood-paneled walls aid in creating a warm, relaxed ambiance and feature stylized portraits of historic, notable Asheville individuals.

The banks of large windows pull in ample lighting and offer views of the bustling city.

On May 15, Luminosa’s regular dinner service will begin with an approachable, rotating menu that is subject to change as the culinary and bar teams source seasonal, local harvests.

“We’re still the local chefs cooking local food,” House said.

The kitchen is outfitted with a wood-burning oven and grill, and the team will produce thin-crust pizzas, fresh pasta, dough, bread, garlic knots, Italian bread sticks and more in-house.

Luminosa’s menu features antipasti, such as the bone marrow tater tots served with horse radish aioli, celery and pickled red onion.

McMullen said the lemon pizza topped with shaved lemon, smoked mozzarella, ricotta, fennel and arugula has been a fan favorite with the staff.

“It caramelizes the onion in the oven and cooks the fennel at the same time. It’s a light and enjoyable pizza to eat,” McMullen said.

The menu continues with full entrées of salads, pasta and protein-forward plates, like the campanelle pasta prepared with country ham, nettles and pickled shallots.

The chefs have applied whole animal butchery as a sustainability method, evident in dishes like the 32 oz. dry-aged bone-in ribeye served with herbed tallow.

“We’re committed to doing everything in-house and doing things the right way,” McMullen said.

Luminosa’s hours are 5-9 p.m. Sunday, 5-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Special culinary events, like pasta-making classes, chef’s dinners and other programs will be announced.

Morning pastries, after-dinner dessert

Executive Pastry Chef Mattie Grey curated the dessert menu with options including the “Secret Garden” made with a chicory and espresso sponge, mascarpone mousse and a salted chocolate crumb.

Stay longer for after-dinner coffee, tea, cocktails, dessert wines and amaro.

Morning and lunch diners may stop into Luminosa for grab-and-go pastries, breakfast sandwiches, coffee and other treats from 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday and 7 a.m.-10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.

The Rooftop Bar

Take a trip to the ninth floor for the chic hangout aptly named The Rooftop Bar.

Opening May 17, The Rooftop Bar offers indoor seating, and three offshoot outdoor deck areas provide different panoramic views of the city and the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Beverage and Restaurant Manager Sarah Charles has curated the menus for the bars at Luminosa, The Rooftop Bar and The Red Ribbon Society.

“Each of the spaces has a particular energy and that should be reflected in the beverage lists,” Charles said. “We have a fun marriage of Italian-inspired, Negroni-inspired cocktails and more ‘patio-crushers,’ as I call them, for the roof. … Nothing too fussy, nothing too complicated, just delicious and crushable.”

Signature cocktails and mocktails complement the culinary offerings and use fresh ingredients and garnishes, and the bars offer Italian-focused wine lists, local beers and other hand-selected libations.

“There’s a lot of passion that exists within these walls and that translates not only to the food but to the beverage,” Charles said. “It’s important for beverages to reflect seasonality, not only on the kitchen side.”

Charles said the zero-proof options are designed to be more polished and offer an adult-curated experience beyond lemonade.

The Rooftop Bar’s beverage menu will offer small bar bites.

The Rooftop Bar’s hours are 4-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 4-11 p.m. Friday, 2-11 p.m. Saturday and 2-10 p.m. Sunday.

For those who recall the former Skybar venue, the fire escape seating areas are no longer accessible to bar guests.

However, Estro said curated live, local music nights, inspired by NPR’s Tiny Desk series, in the former radio station on the ninth floor will launch soon.

The Red Ribbon Society

The Red Ribbon Society, an exclusive speakeasy bar, is tucked away in the hotel’s basement.

It’s named for “the anti-Prohibitionists of 1907, who boldly sported red ribbons as a symbol of defiance.”

The Red Ribbon Society will be open on weekends from 7 p.m.-midnight on Thursday-Saturday.

A secret passcode is required for entry. Specifics are hush-hush to maintain the secretive allure but follow The Red Ribbon Society on social media for clues.

For those cleared for entry, a door off Wall Street leads guests down a dark hallway and into the concealed bar in the former boiler room and A. Williams Ribbon Supply’s ribbon-making factory, established in 1907.

Original features aid in creating the mysterious mood like the barred windows high above the bar at ground level, and framed tools and blueprint displays pay homage to the site’s history and workers. The boiler door remains on the wall opposite The Red Ribbon Society’s bar.

The historic decor is juxtaposed by soft furnishings like the velvety green banquettes, maroon seats and drapes in an elegant bar styled after the roaring 1920s.

In addition to the specialized handcrafted cocktails, a small bar bites menu with charcuterie and snacks will be offered at The Red Ribbon Society.

The Flat Iron Hotel

Where: 20 Battery Park Ave., Asheville.

Opening: May 15.

Info: For more, visit and follow @theflatironavl , @luminosaavl and @redribbonsociety on Instagram.

Stories you may have missed:

  • Exclusive: Asheville chefs to lead new restaurant opening in historic Flatiron building
  • The historic Flat Iron building to reopen as boutique hotel, reservations now open
  • Opening day set for Terra Nova Beer Co.'s South Slope taproom with Mission Pizza

Tiana Kennell is the food and dining reporter for the Asheville Citizen Times, part of the USA Today Network. Email her at [email protected] or follow her on Instagram @PrincessOfPage. Please support this type of journalism with a subscription to the Citizen Times .

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  1. Hotel Cafe Tour Photos and Premium High Res Pictures

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  1. КАФЕ

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  1. Hotel Café

    The Bygones May 17, 2024 7:00 PM - Headlining: The Bygones EVENT DETAILS/BUY Buy Tickets. Brad Byrd - Second Stage May 17, 2024 9:30 PM - Headlining: Brad Byrd EVENT DETAILS/BUY Buy Tickets. Jimmy Gnecco May 18, 2024 7:00 PM - Headlining: Jimmy Gnecco EVENT DETAILS/BUY Buy Tickets.

  2. Hotel Café Tour Concert & Tour History

    Liberty Hall. Lawrence, Kansas, United States. Oct 30, 2008. Hotel Café Tour / Meiko / Thao & The Get Down Stay Down / The Guests / Rachael Yamagata / V.V. Brown / Emily Wells. Bowery Ballroom. New York, New York, United States. Oct 25, 2008. Hotel Café Tour / Steel Train / Ingrid Michaelson / Meiko. The Social.

  3. about. the hotel cafe

    Hotel standbys, like Meiko, are scoring good song placement during kissing scenes at the end of popular television shows, attracting bigger crowds. More celebrities are coming by, too, like singer-actress Mandy Moore, who chose to conclude the tour in support of her first non-sugar pop album "Wild Hope" at the Hotel Café in October.

  4. Hotel Café

    The Hotel Café is a live music venue located off an alley on the Cahuenga Boulevard strip in Hollywood, California, United States, that has become known for helping to establish the careers of new singer-songwriters in the 2000s.The venue began as a coffee shop, but has gained a reputation as an intimate performance space featuring acoustic-based songwriters, such as John Mayer, Adele, Brandy ...

  5. Find tickets for 'hotel cafe tour' at

    30 Results for "hotel cafe tour" Top Suggestions. ... Hotel Cafe Royal; Events 30 Results. Sort by: United States. 4/20/24. Apr. 20. Saturday 08:00 PM Sat 8:00 PM Open additional information for The Wilson Springs Hotel Charlottesville, VA The Southern Cafe & Music Hall 4/20/24, 8:00 PM.

  6. Michaelson, Bareilles Anchoring Hotel Cafe Tour

    Inspired by the singer/songwriter communal vibe of Hollywood, Calif.'s 200-capacity Hotel Cafe, a coffee shop-turned-music venue for which the tour is named, this year's approximately 35-date ...

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    The 30-city tour stops Thursday in Austin, Texas, at SXSW and continues through the South before hitting New York's Fillmore @ Irving Plaza on March 24 and returning home on April 12 for a ...

  8. The Hotel Cafe Tour

    The Hotel Cafe Tour April 5, 2024 Leave a comment. Fermentation is not at all a recent phenomenon. For thousands of years, this technique has been used to produce food, improve its taste, or enhance its nutrition by various cultures globally. From the acrid-smelling kraut of Europe to the hot kimchi of Korea, fermented staples have always held ...

  9. Last Night: The Hotel Cafe Tour At House Of Blues

    The Hotel Cafe Tour House Of Blues October 16, 2008 Better Than: Staying at home, watching Grey's and washing my hair, both of which I love and one of which is soundtracked by several of the ...

  10. Hotel Cafe Tour Tickets, 2024 Concert Tour Dates

    Find Hotel Cafe Tour tickets on SeatGeek! Discover the best deals on Hotel Cafe Tour tickets, seating charts, seat views and more info!

  11. Sing: The Hotel Cafe Tour Documentary (2010)

    Sing: The Hotel Cafe Tour Documentary: Directed by Laura Crosta. With Jim Bianco, Cary Brothers, Holly Conlan, Kevin Devine. Sing celebrates the Hotel Cafe musicians, their friendships and music, and explores how the venue and tour impacted the careers and lives of the artists through the lens of the 2008 Tour.

  12. FAQ. the hotel cafe

    Q: So, where is The Hotel Café? A: 1623 1/2 N. Cahuenga Blvd. In Hollywood. 1/2 a block south of Hollywood Blvd on the West side of the street. Q: How many stages do you have going at once? A: Two! The Main Stage & Second Stage. Q: How big is Hotel Cafe A: The Main Stage has a capacity of ~200. Second Stage ~85.

  13. Concert Review: Hotel Café at the Record Bar

    The Hotel Café Tour featuring Dan Wilson, Ingrid Michaelson, Cary Brothers, Meiko and Jim Bianco Tuesday, April 1, 2008 The Record Bar Better than: The Rainforest Café, barely Photos & Review By RICHARD GINTOWT I've heard good things about the Hotel Café. Supposedly, it's the anti-industry gem of Los Angeles, where up-and-coming singer/songwriters enjoy attentive audiences and the chance...

  14. Cary Brothers Robert Cary Brothers [2] (born 1974) [1] is an American indie rock singer-songwriter originally from Nashville, Tennessee, United States. After moving to Los Angeles and becoming a regular performer at the influential Hotel Cafe venue, Brothers first gained national attention with his song "Blue Eyes" on the Platinum-selling ...

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    The show began at 9 p.m. and lasted well past midnight. Given the number of performers, the Hotel Cafe Tour did a great job of mixing things up—each artist performed for 10-20 minutes each, with ...

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    A tour impacts the career and lives of musicians. Signed in. ... Sing: The Hotel Cafe Tour 2010 1h 35m Documentary List. Reviews A tour impacts the career and lives of musicians.

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    Here are 4 suggested itineraries for a 3-hour tour:. Moscow Bike Route #1. Red Square. St. Basil's Cathedral, GUM, Kazan Cathedral, State Historical Museum and Lenin's Mausoleum. Revolution Square and Theatrical Square. Bolshoy Theatre, Metropol Hotel, Chinese Wall, State Duma of Moscow. Alexander Garden

  18. Tour: Flat Iron Hotel, Luminosa restaurant opens in downtown Asheville

    On May 15, The Flat Iron Hotel will officially open at 20 Battery Park Ave. after construction delays. "We've been training for a whole year for this part of it," said Executive Chef Graham ...

  19. about. the hotel cafe

    about. the hotel cafe. So, to write about one's own venture, I believe, is to be somewhat pretentious, or ego driven in some way or another. "I am great. I like the best stuff. You haven't even heard of the bands i listen to. I eat specialty cheese, and crackers that cost $8 a box, and so on. That shit simply drives me nuts, and /or bonkers.

  20. Inside the Real Metropol Hotel from "A Gentleman in Moscow"—Following

    Inside the Real Metropol Hotel from "A Gentleman in Moscow"—Following in the Count's Footsteps. "A Gentleman in Moscow" by Amor Towles is a must-read novel, recommended by even the likes of Bill Gates, and it is now also a TV series. You don't have to be interested in Moscow either to be charmed by the wit of Count Alexander ...

  21. Cafe on Moscow

    Cafe on Moscow, Stowe, VT. 148 likes · 21 talking about this. Cafe serving breakfast, pastries, sandwiches, full espresso bar with grab and go items in a market setting.

  22. the hotel cafe

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  23. Café Russe restaurant at the 5-star Ritz-Carlton Moscow Hotel

    The Ritz-Carlton's elegant Café Ruse serves the very finest Russian cuisine in the most sumptuous of settings. Guests can try all the famous Russian dishes made with original recipes. Attached to the Café Russe is the private Dining Room, which can be hired for exclusive private functions, and which houses part of the Ritz-Carlton's ...