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An iconic St. Louis hotel that has welcomed guests with elegance and luxury since 1930.

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The pioneering vision of Sam Koplar, a prominent St. Louis developer and operator of hotels, apartments and theaters, The Chase Park Plaza was completed in 1931 as an opulent Art Deco masterpiece despite the Great Depression. With its storied history spanning more than 9 decades, The Chase has been a St. Louis icon of luxury and epicurean experiences. Over the years, many well known celebrities and dignataries have called The Chase Park Plaza home including Louis Rothschild, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Jr., Henry Kissinger, Jimmy Carter, Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis, Johnny Mathis, Steve McQueen and the Rolling Stones.This landmark is the subject of the book Meet Me in the Lobby, which highlights the hotel's legendary events from the 1920's to modern day. Want to know more? You can place an order for the book at the front desk. You can see hundreds of images and artifacts of the Chase Park Plaza in the Legacy Room, in the lower level of the hotel.
The 1920's and 30's
The Chase Park Plaza, St. Louis History - The 1920's and 30's
The 1920's and 30's
The Chase Park Plaza, St. Louis History - The 1920's and 30's
Referred to as "The Miracle of the Miracle City" The Chase Hotel had its Grand Opening September 29, 1922 with the music of Paul Whiteman's Pavilion Royale Orchestra of New York City. This began the hotel's tradition of hosting premier nightclub, radio, television, and movie entertainers. Opened with 200 rooms, The Chase became the "in" place for opulent events, dinner-parties and dances for St. Louis aristocracy who lived in the elite neighborhood.
 
Then with news that owner Chase Ulman wanted to sell the hotel, Sam, Nat and Harry Koplar, prominent developers of apartment buildings, hotels and theaters, went into negotiations to purchase The Chase. The deal fell through.
 
Inspired by the Art Deco styled Savoy Plaza Hotel in New York City, Sam Koplar and his brothers began construction of the Park Plaza Hotel in 1928, right next door to The Chase. Soared 28 stories above the street, The Park Plaza became the third tallest building in the area, and cost a staggering $6 million dollars. This temporary set did not discourage the Koplar Brothers.
 
While the Park Plaza was still under construction, the stock market crash of '29 sent Koplar and his backers into foreclosure and the building was taken over by the Central States Life Insurance Company. Sam Koplar was hired as manager of the neighboring Chase Hotel, but he refused to let his dream fade. Many years later Sam remembered putting his arm around his wife's shoulder and saying, "Don't feel bad. Who knows? In 10 years we might have it all back again."
The 1940's
The 1940's The Chase Park Plaza, Missouri History
The 1940's
The 1940's The Chase Park Plaza, Missouri History
Sam Koplar could not be held down for long. After working as the manager of The Chase Hotel for a number of years, Sam Koplar was able to purchase a considerable amount of Chase bonds. And in January of 1947, Sam and his family bought $630,000 worth of Chase stock and took ownership of The Chase and regained his beloved Chase Park Plaza. This is a miraculous success story and testament to Koplar's vision and perseverance. It was an exciting era in St. Louis history and the start of a wonderful local legacy.
 
To enhance the ambiance of the hotel, the Koplars, under the direction of Harold Koplar, made the hotel the premier entertainment and nightclub place in the area, with comedy and lounge acts playing the Zodiac Room and Crystal Terrace, later called The Gourmet Room, in the basement of the Park Plaza. The biggest names played the Chase Club, including the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, Liberace, Frank Sinatra, Carol Lawrence, Martin and Lewis, Bobby Darin, Paul Anka, Perry Como, and Lena Horne, the first African-American to stay at The Chase.
1950 to 1961
The Chase Park Plaza, Missouri History - 1950 to 1961
1950 to 1961
The Chase Park Plaza, Missouri History - 1950 to 1961
During the 1950's, the Chase had gained a national reputation for its "razzle-dazzle" entertainment and the Chase Club was one of the leading nightclubs in America. If you wanted to be successful, you had to play the Chase Club. St. Louisans were drawn to the spectacular line-up of leading performers, and many famous entertainers stayed and played at The Chase Park Plaza, from Ethel Merman to Bob Hope to Nat "King" Cole.
 
The Chase Club was the place to go on a Saturday night. One night Elvis Presley stopped by clad in his famous gold lame suit. He came back years later in soldier's uniform and said, "What a beautiful place. Man, do I want to play this place some time".
 
In 1953, the courtyard on Lindell, which had been the original hotel entrance, was replaced by an outdoor pool with lavish décor. A large lower level heath club was also opened. Another grand addition, the elegant 2,500 seat Khorassan Room was opened on March 5, 1957, and would host the city's most prestigious balls and events.
 
In 1961, the year Sam Koplar passed away, the Koplar team, in an effort to attract convention business, joined The Chase and The Plaza hotels and called it, The Chase Park Plaza. On the opposite side, The Chase Hotel was also connected to the Chester Apartments on each floor, by adding a section of modern hotel rooms with balconies. A multi-story connecting garage to hold 1,000 cars was also built.
 
In March 1962, when the Chase Club closed, with its ornate two level dining room with chandeliers, mahogany walls and fireplaces, the Tenderloin Room and Bar opened. The Tenderloin's pepperloin steak was and is the room's signature dish cooked over a charcoal grill. The special Hack's steak sauce is still served, but now called Tenderloin sauce.
 
The Tenderloin Room was ravaged by a fire in 1968 and was closed until 1970. It was meticulously restored with antiques and architectural artifacts from the about to be razed Burkham mansion across the street. The restoration was so well done, that many regulars observed little change in the look and feel of the room.
1970 to 1985
1970 to 1985 History of The Chase Park Plaza, St. Louis
1970 to 1985
1970 to 1985 History of The Chase Park Plaza, St. Louis
During the 1970's, great things were happening. In March 1971, the St. Louis Globe-Democrat Magazine published an article about The Chase Park Plaza, touting its grandeur. "The Chase Park Plaza edifice leaps to 28 setback stories at its greatest height and within it are 1,700 separate rooms, many of them combined into suites of plush opulence. All things considered, it is the largest hotel west of the Mississippi."
 
The story praised The Chase as one of less than a dozen big independent hotels left in America and one of only a few family-owned hotels in existence. While some during this time felt that with changing times the independent house was facing a losing battled for survival, The Chase Park Plaza gave no evidence of slowing down!
 
The article also mentioned the hotel's remarkable stats: 150,000 guests per year; 100,000 square feet of convention, restaurant, and banquet space for 200 conventions hosted annually; and six kitchens with some 30 cooks. And at the helm as chairman was Sam's son, Harold, who sat at an English partner's desk surrounded by 1.5 million worth of antiques and statues acquired on his travels. Robert Koplar, Harold's son and heir, become president of the hotel in 1974.
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