One of the most amazing things about working at Union Station is the look on a guests face when they are experiencing the grand lobby for the first time. Our 65-foot barrel ceilings aren’t quite like anything else you will find here in Nashville, and we love that we get to share it with so many of you! If you’ve found yourself coming across our blog before being able to experience the hotel, take a seat and don’t go anywhere! We want to share our space with you and let you experience what makes us so unique. Sit back, and enjoy!
“For more than 120 years Union Station has been a gathering point for travelers arriving to or departing from Nashville. The building’s impressive architecture and design created a sense of excitement as people started their travel adventures. Today, as guests walk through the hotel’s doors, there continues to be a level of wonderment as people look up and see the craftsmanship and grandeur of the space. As employees of the property we all embrace the style, the stories and history that have been created over time. We are all motivated to carefully maintain the property, and continue the tradition of sharing stories and creating a new chapter for the history books in Union Station Hotel Nashville today” explains Eric Hyre, Union Station Director of Operations.
When first pulling into the main drive, your eyes focus in on the cathedral like building made of Kentucky limestone from October 1900. By just one glance, you see the history before you can feel it. To the right, you will see the clock tower reaching into the skyline with the statue of Mercury at its top. Mercury, the messenger God of travel and forward motion watched safely as passengers traveled to and from the train station. Now, as a full functioning hotel, Mercury continues to keep a watchful eye over guests who share their time in Nashville with us, day in and day out.
Walking to our main doors, you will see the letters “L&N” directly above. This stands for the Louisville and Nashville rail line, and represents the train line that ran from the two cities. Open the doors and we’re almost to our favorite part! Through the front doors you begin to see the light of the lobby, the marble flooring, and the art work displayed throughout the hotel. A few seconds later, and you’re here. The Grand Lobby before you and your eyes are pulled in several different directions; unsure of where to look first. With the mixture of light, architecture, and color you begin to see how this truly is a one-of-a-kind Nashville staple.
To your left you see the original fireplace made of Kentucky limestone. This fireplace holds many memories both past and present. During the buildings time as a train station, soldiers would frequent in and out during the war, many of them marrying their significant others prior to their departure. We have continued that tradition on through the years and hold several wedding ceremonies each year right in our grand lobby! Directly above you, you’ll notice the stained glass windows that cover the grand lobby ceiling. Original to the hotel, these pieces were discovered after years of the train station being abandoned. Not wanting them to be stolen, then were secured in a box and hidden away deep in the hotel. Their discovery has helped us keep a beautiful part of the buildings history alive!
It’s 5PM so our next stop is to Carter’s, our on property restaurant! Our culinary team has worked hard at creating creative cocktails to keep you coming back for more. We’re not done with the tour just yet, so let’s grab one of our signature cocktails, The Abigail, made with St. Germaine, Grapefruit, and Prosecco. It’s a perfect combination of dry and sweet and kicks off your time in Nashville in the right way! “I love that making drinks that are as memorable as our building, like The Abigail,” says Jacqueline Schutt Carter’s Restaurant Manager
Making our way to our 5th floor, called our “signature floor” as this was the Executive Office space when it operated as Train Station. Twenty-three rooms all equipped with 18ft ceilings and custom made light fixtures, and a mezzanine that gets you up close and personal with our three crystal chandeliers. On this level, you’ll take a walk around and take notice to 20 angels surrounding the lobby. These are our 20 Angels of Commerce, and are all holding a good or service that was transported through the trains. These Angels are original to the building, and just Mercury, have seen it through off of its trials and triumphs. During the October 2016 renovation, our three chandeliers made their appearance and have been the perfect finishing touch to complete our elegant and unique vibe. They sparkle with the sun and glisten with every look. (Picture of 5th floor from train side, and picture looking down at the lobby. Make sure Chandeliers are present in both photos) From the outside, to the lobby, our signature drinks, and the view from our mezzanine level, Union Station is exactly like nothing else! We’re so thrilled you joined us on this tour and would love to host you in person!