This building, formerly the First National Building, was Lexington’s first skyscraper at 15 stories. When it was built in 1913 it was the tallest building between Cincinnati and Atlanta. Built by the architectural firm of McKim, Mead and White, the building is seeing new life as the 21c Museum Hotel. It took four years to remodel and update the building into a modern hotel complete with restaurant, bar, art gallery and meeting spaces.


  • The First National Bank Building in downtown Lexington was the city's first skyscraper at 15 stories. The building is on the National Register of Historic Places.
    The First National Bank Building in downtown Lexington was the city's first skyscraper at 15 stories. The building is on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • The First National Bank Building has been remodeled and is now the 21c Museum Hotel and features a restaurant, bar and lots of permanent and traveling art collections.
    The First National Bank Building has been remodeled and is now the 21c Museum Hotel and features a restaurant, bar and lots of permanent and traveling art collections.

Fayette National Bank commissioned the New York firm of McKim, Mead and White, whose credits include Madison Square Garden among others, to design the building. The building needed to reflect the bank’s prominence. It was a classic skyscraper design of the time and had a three-story arched windows at the top. It was home to several different banks and offices through the years.

Deborah Berke, the first female dean of the Yale School of Architecture, did the design work on the hotel. The building which was the last high-rise building built in the city before World War I, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

The boutique hotel features permanent art collections and traveling exhibitions. Each of the 88 guest rooms features original artwork. Visitors to the hotel or the Lockbox restaurant can also expect to find art in unexpected places. The hotel also hosts a variety of special events, such as yoga with art, and is available for private events.





Visit Lexington website, accessed Jan. 11, 2017. http://www.visitlex.com/idea-guide/historic-homes/


Patton, Janet and Truman, Cheryl. "Lexington's first skyscraper reopens as 21c Museum Hotel." Lexington Herald-Leader, Feb. 27, 2016. Accessed Jan. 11, 2017. http://www.kentucky.com/news/state/article62909477.html

Fortune, Beverly. "Bank Building that will become 21c Museum Hotel stands tall historically." Lexington Herald-Leader, April 15, 2012. Accessed Jan. 11, 2017. http://www.kentucky.com/news/business/article44168403.html

21c Museum Hotel website, accessed Jan. 11, 2017. http://www.21cmuseumhotels.com/lexington/