Kansas City, MO

The historic 100-year-old Newbern Building on Armour Boulevard in Kansas City, Missouri is an apartment building

CJ Coombs

The Newbern Hotel, Kansas City, MO.Bartokie, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons.

The Newbern Hotel located at 525 E. Armour Boulevard is a historical hotel/apartment building in Kansas City, Missouri. It was designed by architect, Ernest O. Brostrom of Brostrom & Drotts in the architectural style of Sullivaneque. The building is one of the very few in Kansas City using this style. The location of the building is where Cherry Street intersects with Armour Boulevard. The builder was C. O. Jones of the Armour Building Company.

After some renovation by MAC Properties, the hotel reopened in April 2016 with 108 studios, and one and two-bedroom apartments in the building for rent. They are fun and spacious. Click here to see some images.

The basic structure of the hotel includes two nine-story towers which are connected by a one-story vaulted hall. One of the towers is curved at the corner.

Building history

The construction of the building was from 1921 to 1923. The hotel was initially named the Peacock Hotel but was renamed in 1925 to the Newbern Hotel after it was acquired by Benine H. Hopkins. The details of the architecture are impressive.

In the 1920s, Armour Boulevard was lined with luxury high-rise apartments and hotels and the Newbern fit in with that type of architectural development.

In 1980, the building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1978, the Newbern Apartments (Newbern E. Armour Blvd. Apartments) were placed on the Kansas City Register of Historic Places. In 1982, the building became part of the Armour/Gillham Historic Apartment-Hotel District. This is considered the North Hyde Park neighborhood.

Architect Ernest O. Brostrom

Architect, Ernest O. Brostrom (1888-1969), was well-respected in Kansas City. He was noted for his designs of churches. In 1907, he began as a draftsman for the Sioux City, Iowa firm of Eisentraut-Colby-Pottenger Company. He was a native of Sweden and arrived in Kansas City in 1907 from Sioux City to manage one of the branch offices of Eisentraut-Colby-Pottenger Company.

In 1919 Brostrom published Churches, which provided advice and design ideas to religious congregations considering building projects. He didn't solely design churches, he also had commercial projects. In 1920 he partnered with Phillip T. Drotts and formed Brostrom & Drotts.

First Presbyterian Church in Fort Scott, Kansas designed by Brostrom and built 1925.Ammodramus, CC0 1.0, public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

With the economy declining in the Midwest during the 1920s, Brostrom's degree of success had changed too. He retired in Bridgeville, Pennsylvania in the mid-1960s and died in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania on August 28, 1969. 

Thank you for reading.

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Multi-genre writer and indie author with a BA in Eng Journalism & Creative Writing. My working career has been in law firms. Thinker, giver, and lover of life and retired early to be a writer. Born into Air Force service life, life has taken me to Louisiana, Idaho, Kauai, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Missouri. I love family, art, reading, history, true crime, travel, and research.

Kansas City, MO

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