It’s a big deal for the west side, the Cultural District and Fort Worth.
The Crescent Fort Worth opened Wednesday, a $275 million project that brings a five-star luxury hotel, new high-end office space and a restaurant featuring a Food Network chef. It comes from John Goff, a billionaire businessman who has his roots in the Bass family empire and was partners with one of the city’s acknowledged financial wizards, the late Richard Rainwater.
While Goff has lived here for many years, his company and varied business interests have often been located far afield from his adopted hometown.
“I arrived here with a U-Haul,” he said. “I couldn’t be prouder than to build something like this in Fort Worth.”
With Wednesday’s opening of The Crescent Fort Worth, Goff takes center stage with a hotel he hopes will become the “living room” of Fort Worth in the heart of the city’s Cultural District amid world-class museums and near the city’s signature event, the Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo.
“It’s unlike anything we’ve created in town before,” said David Walters, senior vice president at real estate firm CBRE. “We always need quality projects, and this is certainly that.”
Other real estate leaders say the Culture District – similar to downtown Fort Worth – is experiencing a resurgence with new projects stretching into 2024 and beyond.
“Currently, (the Cultural District) boasts more than $1 billion in completed and under-construction projects, and another $460 million has been allocated for office and mixed-use projects slated to begin in 2024,” said Todd Burnette, executive managing director of JLL’s Fort Worth office.
Burnette said there were other projects that will contribute to continued economic growth in the area. He pointed to:
- The soon-to-open Bowie House, an Auberge Resort hotel, another five-star property
- And two new office projects from Goldenrod, one on West Seventh Street and another on University Drive.
“The timing of the Crescent development couldn’t be better, given the Cultural District’s annual draw of over 1.5 million visitors to Dickies Arena and the Fort Worth Stock Show,” said Burnette. “The demand for trophy office space and luxury hotel space could not be stronger, particularly as companies look to entice employees back to the office.”
The hotel and offices are across the street from the Kimbell Art Museum, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and the Amon Carter Museum of American Art as well as the nearby Museum of Science and History, Will Rogers Coliseum, Stock Show & Rodeo and the Dickies Arena.
Those areas are key components of what make Fort Worth special.Mayor Mattie Parker said it was important to have the right developer bring the right project to the table.
“It was critical because I was around and helping lead the project when we were trying to get this right,” she said. “It was frustrating because the hotel developers at the time just didn’t get it.”
As soon as Goff and his team expressed interest in the property, the museums and neighbors in the area as well as the city supported it, she said.
“From the very beginning, Goff and his team recognized how special this property is,” Parker said.
Goff said he had driven by the property for years and, as a longtime real estate developer, wondered why it had sat vacant. Over a beer with Mary Ralph Lowe, who owned much of the property, they came to a deal. Part of that deal called for the hotel to have a bar named after Mary Ralph Lowe’s father, Ralph Lowe. That will be the rooftop bar expected to open after the first of the new year.
For Visit Fort Worth officials, the Crescent and the upcoming Bowie House gives the city something it needed.
In previous years, big acts, such as Paul McCartney, might play Dickies Arena, but they would often stay somewhere else, such as the Four Seasons in Irving, Visit Fort Worth CEO Bob Jameson said.
“Now, we have another option we didn’t have before,” he said.
Just west of the Crescent Fort Worth, the five-star hotel called Bowie House is soon to open. It is a project from Auberge Resorts Collection. It will be smaller and have 88 studios, 12 lofts and six suites.
Fort Worth can support new hotels in the high-end range, said Paul Vaughn, senior president at Source Strategies, a San Antonio-based firm that studies the hospitality industry.
“The Hotel Drover has done well in Fort Worth. It really proved that the city needed some new high-end hotels,” he said.
The Crescent project also includes a 168,000-square-foot office building. The offices will house primarily Goff’s various businesses, including Crescent Real Estate and Goff Capital. PNC Bank has leased about 13,000 square feet of office space on the sixth floor, joining Raymond James, Satori Capital and Royal Bank of Canada and others. The office space is nearly all leased, said Goff.
There are also 167 luxury residential units as part of the project. Crescent Real Estate also owns some property northwest of the current development that it will likely develop in the future, Goff said. No plans have been announced for that location.
The Crescent Hotel
3300 Camp Bowie Blvd.
Fort Worth 76107
200 guest rooms. Currently only two of the four floors are open.
Room rate: Rooms begin about $300 per night.
Restaurants: Emelia’s, an upscale Mediterranean restaurant with Chef Preston Paine, a Food Network contestant. Emilia’s name refers to Fort Worth’s Italian sister city — Reggio Emilia.
The Blue Room, an elevated dining room within Emelia’s.
The Circle Bar, named after the Fort Worth Circle, a progressive art colony that started in the 1940s.
A rooftop bar, Ralph’s will open after the first of the year.
Hotel design: Rottet Studio.
In-house dining was developed by AvroKO Hospitality Group
Other amenities: three-story Canyon Ranch Wellness Club, 4,000-square-foot ballroom for weddings
Bob Francis is business editor for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at email@example.com. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.