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Boutique Hotel coming to historic downtown Tiffin

The Tiffin Boutique Hotel Group LLC announces that it has purchased the former Gibson Hotel in the historic Washington Street corridor of downtown Tiffin and will be converting it to a contemporary boutique hotel.

Located at 160 S. Washington St., this property was the site of various hotel operations since its erection in 1874 as the Wisler House. Over the decades it was Pratts Hotel, the Empire House, and then the Gibson Hotel in 1930, under which name it operated until 1963 when it closed. When it was built and throughout the remainder of the 19th century, the hotel was extoled for its architectural elements and fine premises. The beauty of the hotel’s façade remains today, albeit tarnished by the years of neglect.

The Tiffin Hotel Group plans a 23-room hotel in today’s popular “boutique” style. As a small boutique hotel, it will sport smartly appointed rooms with all modern furniture and fixtures, while the common spaces will standout with edgy but pleasing décor. The original three-story spiral staircase in an open atrium will again shine with a melding of old and new. A lower rooftop deck with a garden patio is being contemplated in the rear of the building. The boutique hotel has a planned opening in 2021.

Rendering of possible façade of the new Tiffin boutique hotel modelled after a drawing of the original 1874 Wisler House done by historian John Huss.

The brainchild of this new boutique hotel in downtown Tiffin was Jeff Weber and his other partners in Lakewood, Ohio who are experienced real estate investors and have some familiarity with Tiffin. However, they were hesitant to proceed with the purchase of the property because of the previously announced plans by a Miami, Florida developer for a large scale, all new construction high rise development along the riverfront that included a hotel and condominium project. However, with the encouragement and financial backing of Andrew Kalnow, CEO of National Machinery and a prominent local investor, Weber and the Tiffin Hotel Group decided to go forward with their project.

Weber stated, “We are very excited about this project. Tiffin is a happening place. As a smaller city with its historical preservation and Main Street program orientation that helps stimulate downtown living, shopping, and restaurants,

a boutique hotel in the heart of downtown also makes lots of sense.” Weber also explained that the Tiffin boutique hotel will be affiliated with Kalnow’s planned B&B village in the historic Fort Ball/Frost Parkway neighborhood. Kalnow commented, “With the combined options for overnight visitors of staying in a downtown boutique hotel or at an executive suite at the B&B village in the oldest part of town adjacent to the Monument on scenic Frost Parkway, Tiffin may stand out as a true destination for overnight visitors. It will also give a more unique hospitality experience for travelers doing business in the area.”

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