Thursday, 30 October 2008 13:40

The Fort Harrison’s Makeover, a Sneak Peek Featured

Written by  Angela LeMay
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The Birthplace of Clearwater Jazz Holiday


Ft_Harrison_Sign-in.pngOctober 15, 2008, Downtown Clearwater—On Wednesday the 15th of October from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., The Church of Scientology hosted a cocktail reception in the lobby of the Clearwater Bank Building to showcase to the public for the first time the new designs, handcrafted furniture and special features that will be part of the historic Fort Harrison’s makeover.  The building, which has been an icon in Clearwater since 1926, is being renovated from top to bottom to modernize its facilities and polish up its 1920’s splendor.  The announcement coincided with the Clearwater Jazz Holiday, which grew out of a series of jazz concerts held in the Fort Harrison during the 1970’s.

According to Chuck Adams, the co-owner of the former WAZE radio station and who was responsible for planning those concerts, “Back in those days, the Fort Harrison hosted the likes of jazz greats such as Woody Herman and his Thundering Herd, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Stan Keaton, and Buddy Rich. That was when I realized how much Clearwater loves jazz.”

Guests gather to watch a presentation of the new Fort Harrison premises.According to Pat Harney, spokesperson for the Church of Scientology, which currently owns the Fort Harrison, the $30 million dollar renovation project started in January of this year and will be completed in early 2009.  While the building itself will be an attraction for its historical significance and updated splendor, the Church is opening up its dining facilities and state of the art event venues, which will greatly augment the redevelopment efforts of the downtown.  These restaurants are the fine-dining Hibiscus Restaurant, the Garden Restaurant which is the only poolside restaurant in Clearwater and the Hourglass Deli—a home-town deli with an international twist to appease every ethnic palate.  The Grand Ballroom and Crystal Ballroom will offer up-to-date wedding and event venues.

A view of the remodeled rooms of the Fort Harrison HotelPresent at the reception were the Downtown Clearwater City Manger, Courtney Orr, members of the Downtown Development Board and the Downtown Clearwater Partnership, the President of the Clearwater Chamber of Commerce, Doug Linder and dozens of business owners, developers and Downtown Clearwater development enthusiasts.

Eight-foot designs of the Fort Harrison interior and historical photos were on display at the reception as well as at the 4 days of Open House which followed for the general public.  Also featured were several DVD loops displaying past weddings and events at the Fort Harrison, a flythrough of the new designs and construction photos of the ongoing renovations and some of the handcrafted furniture from the Church’s mill.

Clearwater looks forward to the reopening of the grand Fort Harrison Hotel in early 2009.

- Tampa Bay Informer
The Good News Newspaper


Supporting Good News The Tampa Bay Informer The Good News Newspaper Serving Pinellas & Hillsboro Florida This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Read 1041 times Last modified on Sunday, 07 December 2008 17:03

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