Hyatt Regency revamping its restaurant, bar

The Hyatt Regency has announced a major redesign of its lobby bar and Glass Garden restaurant for the last phase of a multimillion dollar, top-to-bottom renovation that started in 2007 to update the 33-year hotel.

Work at the hotel, located downtown in the same complex as Rupp Arena and Lexington Center, is expected to be complete by early August.

There will be a number of changes made to the bar, which now sits sunken behind a low-brick wall.

"The brick wall is coming out," said Larry Bell, general manager. "The bar will be raised to the lobby floor level. Wood floors will replace carpet. The bar will have a dark mahogany, clubby look."

There will also be sofa seatings, free wireless Internet access, a fountain, color-changing LED lights and three 60-inch televisions behind the bar. Two large communal tables with power outlets and built-in lamps will be available for guests to use their laptops.

The menu will feature classic, Kentucky dishes like hot Browns, but "with a unique twist," Bell said. The bar will feature local craft beers and Kentucky bourbons. Food service at the Hyatt will continue to be available from 6:30 a.m. until midnight.

During the $1 million renovation, food service has been moved to the Kentucky Room and Hyttops Sports Bar.

This completes the facelift of the 366-room hotel, which will cost $17.5 million "when all is said and done," Bell said. It was expected to have been finished in 2009, but the planned restaurant work was delayed for a year because of the economic downturn.

All areas of the hotel have been renovated, including all the guest rooms, public areas, fitness room and corridors, as well as new windows and heating and air conditioning systems. The indoor pool was redone with an outdoor deck.

The renovation has been funded by The Procaccianti Group, a family-owned company in Cranston, R.I., that bought the Hyatt Regency building a few years back. Known as TPG, the company owns several dozen hotels.