Hotel planned for former Uptown high school campus

ace hotel rendering

A rendering of the proposed Ace Hotel on the corner of 19th Avenue and Logan Street. (OZ Architecture)

New York-based developer GFI Development Co. submitted plans to the city last week for a project called “Ace Hotel” along 19th Avenue between Grant and Logan streets.

The project still needs to be approved by the city.

Portland-based Ace Hotel operates nine hotels in the U.S. and London. GFI developed at least two of them, in New York City and Palm Springs, California, according to its website.

The Denver plans call for the renovation of buildings at 1840 Grant St. and 1855 Logan St., as well as the addition of an 11-story tower atop an existing parking lot at the corner of 19th and Logan streets.

The existing buildings, which include the Archdiocese of Denver’s former Cathedral High School, a convent once known as Seton House and a standalone gymnasium, would become part of the hotel.

The plans also call for some restaurant, office and retail space.

GFI did not respond to a request for comment.

Denver-based OZ Architecture, which was tapped to draw up plans for the project, issued a news release with basic details, but declined to address questions.

“Adaptive reuse such as this is the perfect way to retain Denver’s historic buildings during this period of unprecedented growth, while still creating the infrastructure we need as a city, including more hotel rooms,” managing principal Rebecca Stone said in a statement.

cathedral high school

Cathedral High School was built in 1921 and remained open until 1982. (BusinessDen file photo)

The timeline for the project is unclear.

Cathedral High School operated from 1921 to 1982, according to nonprofit Historic Denver. The Spanish Renaissance Revival complex was designed by Denver architect Harry Manning, and features a three-story building wrapped around a center courtyard.

After it closed, the high school served for a time as a homeless shelter, according to Historic Denver. Nuns cared for patients with AIDS at Seton House during the 1990s.

GFI purchased the parcels, which total more than an acre, in December from an entity headed by Grant Barnhill, the owner of Denver coworking brand Shift Workspaces.

The Barnhill-led group bought the property in 2013 for $3.3 million from the Archdiocese of Denver, and at one point planned to redevelop it into a shared workspace with ground-floor retail or restaurant space.

ace hotel rendering
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