Historic Cosby Hotel gets new life

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - On Thursday, the historic Cosby Hotel building in downtown Kansas City will be given new life.

The building will reopen with two new businesses. The hotel narrowly dodged the city's wrecking ball two years ago when it started to collapse. After a renovation of grand proportions, The Milwaukee Delicatessen and Sasha's Baking Company are set to open.

Sunflower Development Group was able to keep some unique items inside like Frank Lloyd Wright-designed windows, and the original flooring and ceiling, which was redesigned to look identical to the one the building housed in the late 1800s.

Developers also found a newspaper buried behind one of the walls, which was dated 1920. Mark Moberly of Sunflower Development Group said the building's history is astonishing.

"This was the first building to house a female physician. It was later a hotel. After that it was a office building," he said. "It's been a number of things and we've heard a lot of stories from folks who have been in this building for one reason or another. In fact, it was also the first place Anheuser Busch delivered beer after prohibition ended."

The new owners of Milwaukee Delicatessan are Jon Gerner and Jason Pryor, who currently own Pizza 51 and Pizza 51 West restaurants. Jeremy and Michelle Schepmann are the owners of Sasha's Baking Co. A ribbon cutting is set for 10:30 a.m., Thursday, at 9th Street and Baltimore Avenue in downtown Kansas City.

A reception featuring food and drinks from both businesses is planned for 5 p.m.

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