Providence Biltmore

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Providence Biltmore
Biltmore Hotel Providence RI 2017.jpg
General information
Type Hotel
Location 11 Dorrance Street,
Providence, Rhode Island 02903, United States
Completed 1922
Roof 220 ft (67 m)
Technical details
Floor count 18
Design and construction
Architect Warren & Wetmore
Providence-Biltmore Hotel
Providence Biltmore is located in Rhode Island
Providence Biltmore
Providence Biltmore is located in the US
Providence Biltmore
Location Providence, Rhode Island
Coordinates 41°49′27″N 71°24′49″W / 41.82417°N 71.41361°W / 41.82417; -71.41361Coordinates: 41°49′27″N 71°24′49″W / 41.82417°N 71.41361°W / 41.82417; -71.41361
Built 1922
Architect Warren & Whetmore
Architectural style Federal, Beaux Arts
Part of Downtown Providence Historic District (#84001967)
NRHP Reference # 77000005[1]
Significant dates
Added to NRHP May 27, 1977
Designated CP February 10, 1984

The Providence Biltmore Hotel is an upscale hotel that opened in 1922 as part of the Biltmore Hotel chain. It is located on the southern corner of Kennedy Plaza at 11 Dorrance Street in downtown Providence, Rhode Island. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.

Bowman-Biltmore Hotels[edit]

Bowman-Biltmore Hotels was founded by John McEntee Bowman and Louis Wallick. The brand is currently owned by Finard Coventry Hotels who bought the hotel out of receivership in May 2012. The company is planning a complete renovation of the hotel. Providence Biltmore Hotel is a member of Historic Hotels of America, the official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.[2]

Building history[edit]

The Biltmore was built in the neo-Federal Beaux-arts style and designed by the architectural firm of Warren and Wetmore, who also designed Grand Central Terminal. It was the second-tallest building in the city after the Rhode Island State House, until the Industrial Trust Tower was finished six years later.[3] Today, the Biltmore is the 9th-tallest building in the city.

The hotel was bought by Sheraton Hotels in 1947 and renamed the Sheraton-Biltmore Hotel. Providence was inundated by Hurricane Carol in 1954, and much of the lobby of the Sheraton-Biltmore was underwater; a plaque commemorates the high water mark today, eight feet up on lobby columns.[4] Sheraton sold the hotel in 1968 and it regained its original name.

In 1975, the Biltmore closed and remained vacant for five years.[5] At one point, it was facing demolition; Mayor Buddy Cianci helped with efforts to designate the hotel a landmark.[6] A group of local businesses implemented Federal tax credits to rehabilitate the building, reopening it in 1979. The Biltmore's external glass elevator was added during this rehabilitation, and serves all 18 floors of the hotel.

The hotel was originally built with 600 rooms; later, walls were knocked down and suites were created. It now offers 292 guest rooms and is currently host to the largest Starbucks coffeehouse in New England.[7] McCormick & Schmicks Restaurant and the Spa at the Providence Biltmore also occupy space at the hotel.

The hotel contains banquet space of over 19,000 square feet (1,800 m2). The rooftop level Grand Ballroom offers expansive views of the city and Kennedy Plaza and can hold up to 750 guests; its event space is designed for functions such as wedding receptions, banquet service, and conferences.

It was the tallest and largest hotel in Providence for 71 years, until the Omni Providence Hotel was completed in 1993.

In popular culture[edit]

Cinema backdrop[edit]

The Providence Biltmore features prominently in the 2004 Jeff Nathanson film "The Last Shot", and the 2007 Anne Fletcher film "27 Dresses".

Showtime episodes of "Brotherhood" from 2004-2007 were also shot here.


The Hotel is the scene of a Brown University collegiate reunion in The Devil Wears Prada (novel) by Lauren Weisberger.

See also[edit]



  1. ^ National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ "Providence Biltmore Hotel, a Historic Hotels of America member". Historic Hotels of America. Retrieved January 28, 2014. 
  3. ^ Woodward, Wm McKenzie. Guide to Providence Architecture. 1st ed. United States: 2003. ISBN 0-9742847-0-X. p. 99.
  4. ^ Providence Biltmore Hotel History - The Biltmore
  5. ^ Jonic, Flo. "The Providence Biltmore: 90 years of rich history". RINPR. Retrieved 25 December 2016. 
  6. ^ Kostrzewa, John (25 December 2016). "John Kostrzewa: A winter night's tour of the Providence skyline". The Providence Journal. Retrieved 25 December 2016. 
  7. ^

External links[edit]