Hotel Wausau has been a keystone in the Wausau, Wisconsin, skyline for nearly a century. Built in 1924 for a cool $1.375 million, the soaring property has long served as an eye-catching focal point of the town, offering up 257 rooms and amenities such as a ballroom, a coffee shop, and an on-site barber.
It’s lived many lives since its early days—transitioning into other hotels, an almost-convention center, and then, eventually, a residential building. Though the latter happened in the mid-1980s, the property’s housing units had since deteriorated, needing both substantial updates and critical accessibility accommodations.
That’s where Gorman & Co. came in, taking on a nearly $25 million rehabilitation of the property—with existing residents and retail tenants remaining in place during the entire construction process.
The final product offers 94 one- and two-bedroom units and retains its original architectural integrity and much of its early-1900s charm, including its two-story walnut-finished lobby and its original U.S. Mail wall-mounted letterbox.
“You have to see it to believe it,” says Liz Brodek, development director for the city of Wausau. “The transformation that those units went through from what they were to what they are is incredible. This is what people deserve.”
Now dubbed The Landmark, the former hotel is called home by a diverse group of residents, including those of all ages, financial backgrounds, and abilities.
“The city of Wausau is very thrilled to see Gorman’s work on this local, state, and national historic site,” says Wausau mayor Katie Rosenberg. “We are super excited to see how this project pushes us forward as well as reflecting on our past.”