Unlike other 24-hour gateway cities, Tampa has always flown very quietly and confidently under the radar. Its understated and simple approach to life results in an authenticity and realness that its residents proudly say distinguishes it from all other great cities. But, with a growing reputation as a culinary hotspot, world-class shopping, a collection of great museums, a very progressive nightlife scene, and unparalleled sports teams including recent Stanley Cup and Super Bowl champions, Tampa’s time has come, alongside a paradigm-shifting transformative masterwork that will change the very heartbeat of the city and move its centre to a new place.
Cementing the city’s coming of age and its position as a gateway to southern Florida, is the unveiling of Water Street Tampa, an astonishing $3.5 billion urban mixed-use development expansion project led by Strategic Property Partners, a partnership between Cascade Investment LLC and Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik.
A truly pioneering and visionary venture that has set a standard for the future of cities around the world, Water Street Tampa has not just revitalized the destination, it has cleverly shifted its focal point and transformed the way Tampa lives, works, and breathes. The jewel in the crown of Water Street Tampa, the five-star hotel and residences have been masterminded and created by Ian Schrager, in collaboration with Marriott International.
Reminiscent of Stockholm and other very livable European and Scandinavian harbor cities that combine the best of a metropolitan city with living by the sea and being close to water, when complete, the Water Street Tampa neighbourhood will double the footprint of downtown Tampa. Unfolding over 9 million square feet, the neighbourhood is built around wellness, connectivity, walkability, and sustainability, placing its residents in the heart of a balanced urban experience, and offering sparkling waterfront views, publicly accessible green space, first-rate dining and shopping, cultural attractions, entertainment venues, residences, and offices.
At the heart of this transformative project, The Tampa Edition sets a new standard as the city’s first five-star experience, revealing an unparalleled level of sophistication, originality, and design alongside the personal, intimate, and individual experience that the Edition brand is known for.
Designed and programmed by ISC Design Studio, in partnership with Morris Adjmi Architects, Nichols Architects, Bonetti Kozerski Architects, and Roman and Williams, the hotel remains firmly rooted in the Edition brand’s strong sense of refined simplicity and style. Spread over 26 stories, there are 172 rooms and 38 private residences, a rooftop terrace with a pool, expansive spa and wellness facility, fitness center, and seven bars and restaurants including a signature offering from Michelin-starred chef John Fraser.
Arts Club combines a trio of spaces that come together in a glamorous offering that has elevated Tampa’s entertainment scene. Start your evening in the Lounge, with a cocktail and some light bites against a seductive backdrop of ebonized wood, black damask velvet sofas, black leather banquettes and—just for fun—a specially commissioned photobooth in black lacquer with a gold interior.
From there, the Verde Antico marble bar noir, with its luminescent yellow velvet stools in the bar area, is the perfect precursor before an evening of entertainment in the finale, Arts Club Cabaret. Featuring an organic undulating ceiling of 350 mirrored balls of various sizes and theatrical ruby red velvet drapery, this Radio City Music Hall-inspired space will play host to a roster of entertainers with spectacular effects.
In a first for Tampa, and unlike anything the city has seen before, The Rooftop is the place to see and be seen, and truly has it all. Located on level nine, just below the residences, the area comprises Azure at Edition—a restaurant overseen by chef John Fraser—and a sprawling pool club with cabanas for day and night, open to hotel guests and residences only, and accessible either via the restaurant, or its own entrance.
Here, swathes of travertine create a neutral backdrop for trimming of lush landscaping including Japanese blueberry trees and bright pops of purple bougainvillaea, which sit atop the five poolside cabanas materializing an outdoor garden in the sky. With 81 sun loungers, resident DJs and a bar, the vibe here is decadent and relaxed—the perfect spot to while away a sunny day against Tampa city views.
For more information, visit editionhotels.com