What promises to be a game-changer for the West Palm Beach waterfront – The Ben – has opened as the city’s first waterfront hotel. The 208-room hotel, which features the Proper Grit signature restaurant and rooftop Spruzzo restaurant and bar, is part of the Autograph Collection portfolio. It’s a much-needed luxury hotel that should bring more business and tourists to an area that has seen its share of starts and stops in terms of development.
“We’re thrilled to introduce The Ben, an unmistakably original hotel that injects new energy into the traditionally classic city of West Palm Beach,” said Jennifer Connell, vice president and global brand leader for Autograph Collection Hotels. “The Ben re-imagines classic South Florida lifestyle for today’s travelers by blending elements inspired by the city’s early days as an untamed tropical paradise with modern touches.’’
The Ben, located one block’s walking distance of the Clematis Street restaurant district and overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway and Palm Beach,
features a modern design aesthetic reflecting the spirit of the Ben Trovato Estate, one of West Palm Beach’s original homes.
Byrd Spilman Dewey, one of Florida’s more prolific authors of the Pioneer Era, gave her 1892 Victorian home the name “Ben Trovato,’’ which literally means “well invented.” The name is derived from “Se non è vero, è ben trovato,” an Italian phrase which, loosely translated, means, “Even if it isn’t true, it’s a good story.”
The Estate put West Palm Beach on the cultural map, entertaining luminaries from Henry Phipps Jr. to Woodrow Wilson and the Vanderbilts.
“The Ben is a development unlike anything West Palm Beach has seen before. We’re re-defining what it means to travel to and live in West Palm,” said Bernardo Neto, general manager of The Ben.
In addition to Proper Grit and Spruzzo, The Ben has more than 8,000 square feet of meeting and event space, from a boardroom to a glass-enclosed gallery, The Studio, which provides a supplementary flex-space that serves as a blank canvas for the most events.
Photos courtesy Shannon Smagala