Hotel President and the Drum Room
The Hotel President was one of the most popular hotels in downtown Kansas City’s Power & Light District. Opened in 1926, the President was just one of many luxurious hotels built in the city during this era. Notable guests have included Bob Dylan, Charles Lindbergh, and Presidents Hoover, Truman, Eisenhower, and Nixon. It hosted the headquarters for the 1928 Republican National Convention which nominated Herbert Hoover for President. The hotel’s Drum Room lounge, which opened in 1941, was serviced by numerous legendary entertainers such as Frank Sinatra, the Marx Brothers, the Glen Miller Orchestra, Sammy Davis Jr., Benny Goodman, and Tommy Dorsey. The President closed in the early 1980s and sat vacant for over 20 years. In 2006 the hotel underwent a $45 million renovation and reopened as a Hilton franchise, dubbed the Hilton President Kansas City. The President, along with multiple other hotels, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.
Mainstreet Theater, Kansas City, MO
Located in downtown Kansas City in Jackson County, Missouri, the four-story Mainstreet Theater is one of the city's most visible historic landmarks. First opened on October 30, 1921 during the vaudeville era, it was built for promoter Martin Beck by the distinguished architectural firm of C.W and Geo. L. Rapp of Chicago, who designed some of the most significant theaters in America in the 1920s and 1930s. It was the largest theater in the city until the Midland Theater was built in 1927, and it is distinctive for its Beaux Arts design and prominent Byzantine-style dome. With a seating capacity of 3,250, it was one of the first theaters of its type to cater to the working class. Between 1921-1949 it presented vaudeville acts, movies and traveling shows. It reopened in 2009 after being shuttered for a long period, and is currently owned by Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas. The building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2007.
The Midland Theatre
The Midland Theatre is a historic entertainment venue in the Power & Light District of Kansas City. It first opened in 1927 as Loew’s Midland Theater; at the time it was the third-largest theater in the United States. It became well known for its opulent interior, which included features such as gold leafing, hand-cut crystal chandeliers, and other ornamentations. After the original theatre closed in 1961, it was acquired and operated by AMC for a number of years. It underwent extensive renovations and restorations in 2008. Today the theatre is sponsored by Arvest Bank, and is formally known as the Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. It hosts a number of live shows and performances throughout the year. The theatre was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.
Kansas City Public Library
Located in the historic former headquarters of First National Bank, the Central Library serves as the major resource library for the Kansas City Public Library system. Offering breathtaking galleries and reading rooms, and an ingenious parking garage that looks like a bookshelf, the Central Library is consistently included in lists of the most beautiful public libraries in the United States. The former bank vault is now home to the Stanley H. Durwood film collection, while the old bank's 35-foot ceilings add grandeur to the main reading room. Located on the fifth floor of the Central Library, the Missouri Valley Room is the premiere collection of rare books and one-of-a-kind historical records related to the history of Kansas City. Patrons may use the reading room to view archival and genealogical materials that do not circulate beyond the library.