Hotel Emma at Historic Pearl Brewery
Turning a 119 year old brewhouse into a four-star boutique hotel is no easy task. For the project to be a success, the structure had to literally be raised from it’s grave.
Pearl Brewery operated from 1883 until 2001 in their downtown San Antonio, Texas location. It was once the largest brewery in Texas, and even kept afloat during the Prohibition era. Today the 22- acre Pearl site grounds has become a culinary gathering place where you can eat, live, learn, and play on the banks of the San Antonio River. Located in the 119-year-old brewhouse, the newest addition to the Pearl site, will be Hotel Emma. Slated to open in Summer of 2015, the hotel will feature 146 rooms as well as a restaurant, bar, catering, and in-room dining service. The hotel will embrace the extravagance of the iconic 19th century brew house and seeks to keep as much of the structure’s original features as possible. The hotel received it’s name in honor of the wife of the Pearl Brewery founder, Otto Koehler. His wife Emma is credited for keeping the brewery alive during Prohibition after her husband had passed away. Renovating the original building would be no easy task for the developer. The goal is to connect the hotel to the structure’s historical past, while still feeling modern and grand.
With structures this old, foundation settlement is very common and usually expected. In what was previously known as the brew masters office, the concrete foundation had settled over 5 inches. The project’s structural engineer needed a solution to remediate the settlement, all while keeping the slab intact and causing as little disruption to the original floor and wall tile as possible.
URETEK ICR was contacted to assist with leveling the future hotel’s foundation back to it’s proper elevation and help preserve the room’s original features as much as possible. To do this, URETEK ICR team members utilized The URETEK Method® as it is ideal for raising sunken concrete, by drilling a penny sized injection hole into the slab, and filling the voids underneath with an organic structural polymer that lifts the settling concrete slab.
URETEK ICR was able to successfully lift the foundation back to it’s original elevation. Only nine penny size holes were drilled into the floor’s tile at various points, so as to keep the floor intact as much as possible. “In less than one day we managed to lift, void fill, and stabilize the original slab approximately five inches.” said Project Manager, Raymond Henson of URETEK ICR Central Texas. The construction company followed up with a tile restoration company to fill in the small holes that were drilled, and the room once again felt like it did in 1883. The future home of Hotel Emma was properly stabilized with URETEK’s patented structural structural polymer and executed by their professional crew members. URETEK ICR’s repair process was quick, clean, caused little disruption, and most importantly… helped to keep the historical former brewery in it’s original state. Who wouldn’t drink to that!