As one of Oklahoma City’s top architectural treasures, the storied hotel represents a rebirth for the landmark and the whole building is one of the Modern Frontier’s most historic renovations to date.
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – History comes to life yet again in Oklahoma City with the highly anticipated Spring 2022 debut of the region’s restored crown jewel, The National, Autograph Collection, at the First National Center. The building originally opened in 1931 as an iconic bank and landmark monument, and stands proudly at 32-stories high to this day. Following an extensive restoration and one of the biggest renovations in the state's history, the former bank office tower has been transformed into a hotel with 146 guest rooms alongside opulent new apartment homes, restaurants, bars, and retail offerings.
Widely considered one of the region’s top architectural treasures, the First National Center is on the Historic Register and was once the largest building in Oklahoma. Oil drilling, the banking industry, and the history of Oklahoma City’s tremendous growth and its arduous challenges are all woven into the fabric of The First National Center, reflecting the ‘Modern Frontier’.
This Spring, the First National Center is set to become Oklahoma City’s epicenter and ‘living room’, reimagining the 1.1 million square foot property into an Autograph Collection property, The First Residences at First National, Stock & Bond Steakhouse, Tellers Restaurant, The Great Hall bar, The Library of Distilled Spirits (in the bank vault), the National Ballroom, a barbershop, and a blowout bar – all under one roof. The restoration efforts include repairs to murals, decorative painted ceilings, stone columns, cast stone, metal finishes, vault doors, and safes. The Great Banking Hall has been fully restored and will be utilized as a public lobby. The basement and ground floor will encompass a mixture of high-end retail, multiple restaurants & bars, and commercial spaces.
The National, operated by Coury Hospitality, comprising the first eight floors of the historic building will feature 146 guest rooms (including 16 suites, and the signature Presidential Suite) designed with intent and raw elements from the former building’s previous life. As a unique reprieve for locals and travelers that celebrates the dynamism of the Oklahoma City community, the hotel rooms pay direct tribute to the original design elements found within the celebrated property, maintaining boutique charm with inspired touches.
Taking what was originally intended as office spaces for the former bank and many of the city’s most influential businesses, the rooms have been reimagined into detailed and sophisticated accommodations, featuring dark royal blue color palettes for a more intimate and inviting setting. Located on the third floor lives a 900-square foot Presidential Suite boasting a large dining table, high ceilings, and multiple connecting rooms.
The Intersection of Old & New: Intentional Design
Redesigned and brought back to life by NE Development & Partners, ADG, Flick Mars Architects, and EverGreene Architectural Arts (historical preservation specialists known for restoring the Jefferson Memorial), First National Center evokes a level of polished endurance and opulence felt immediately upon entering the building. Monumental in size and intricate in every detail, The National serves as a preserved hotel landmark and symbol of Oklahoma’s journey and its connection to its past with an art deco and neoclassical design aesthetic.
Determined to breathe new life into the space and retain the existing structure, charm, and bank artifacts from the 1930s, First National Center is an embodiment of the building’s noble legacy – a moment of civic and national pride for one of the finest examples of American craftsmanship.
Upon entering the lobby, guests are immediately greeted by large marble bank columns in the Great Hall, and walls adorned with four large murals – the Louisiana Transfer, Sunset Trail, and two of the Oklahoma Land Run, all painted by Edgar Spier Cameron in 1931, depicting scenes of significant events from Oklahoma’s history, surrounding the ‘Great Hall Bar’ and lounge area centering the space.
Art deco details are seen and felt inside and out, from the near century-old marble floor in front of each teller window, to the aluminum aviation beacon that towers 456 feet above the sidewalk, restored bank vault doors, and one symbol that is unmistakably Oklahoma: the corn stalks that adorn the entrance of the building.
World-Class Dining & Imbibing Takes Center Stage at The First National Center
The historic property will unveil multiple food & beverage concepts under bespoke hospitality management and development company, Apicii, and Michelin-starred Chief Culinary Officer Jonathan Benno. From Tellers and The Great Hall, to Stock & Bond and The Library of Distilled Spirits, each concept is imbued with a distinct personality and offerings that embody traditional Oklahoma City hospitality with unrivaled craftsmanship and locally sourced ingredients reflecting the region’s bounty.
Tellers (inside The National)
Tellers serves authentic interpretations of regional Italian cuisine featuring traditional methods of Italian cooking and the philosophy of using seasonal ingredients with integrity form the basis of the house-made pastas, wood oven-baked Neapolitan pizzas, and locally sourced vegetables and steaks cooked over a wood burning grill. Tellers’ extensive Italian wine list highlights the breadth and diversity of Italy’s wine growing regions and unique varietals. Tellers is located in the historic First National Bank gallery amongst the original teller booths, which have been meticulously restored. The atmosphere at Tellers and The Great Hall embraces the building’s rich heritage as a convivial communal space.
The Great Hall (inside The National)
The Great Hall is evocative of Europe’s majestic all-day bars. The grandeur of this architectural masterpiece is the perfect setting to enjoy espressos paired with fresh baked pastries, or craft European cocktails such as Italian Aperitivos and Spanish Gintonicos complemented by antipasti and Neapolitan pizzas from Tellers.
Stock & Bond (within the First National Center)
Stock & Bond is an American steakhouse that pays homage to the rich agricultural history of the High Plains, where cattlemen and farmers have worked the land and raised livestock since the early 1800’s. Stock & Bond also celebrates the American distillers who have honed their craft with an extensive selection of Whiskeys and Bourbons that meet The-Bottled-in Bond Act of 1897, which stipulated that the whiskey must be the product of one distilling season from one distillery, aged in a federally bonded warehouse for at least four years, and bottled at 100 proof.
The Library of Distilled Spirits (within the First National Center)
The Library of Distilled Spirits houses over 1,500 unique expressions of distilled spirits. The curated collection is documented in the Library’s Encyclopedia, which highlights the rich history of making liquor from fermentation through distillation, aging, and blending. The Library of Distilled Spirits pays homage to the culture of craft cocktails with a selection of more than 200 classics. The barkeeps will combine their deep knowledge of spirits and classic cocktails to create remarkable experiences for guests. The Library of Distilled Spirits is located in the basement of the historic First National Bank building, with an archive of rare and fine spirits stored in the iconic bank vault.
The First Residences at First National: Where Art, History & Elegance Collide Art, history, and elegance combine to create The First Residences at First National, an iconic living space in the heart of Oklahoma City, professionally managed by NE Property Management. Offering 193 spacious dwelling configurations, including studio, one-and two-bedroom apartment homes, and penthouse floor plans that combine stylish and modern interiors, The First Residences are unlike any building in the city.
Premium community amenities such as a state-of-the-art fitness center, meeting rooms, 14-story parking garage, high end shopping experiences, rooftop amenity deck with heated infinity pool, cabanas, as well as 24/7 valet and concierge services, make this luxury apartment building suitable for a variety of lifestyles.
The National, Autograph Collection is located at 120 N Robinson Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73102 on the corner of Park Avenue and Robinson Street, at the epicenter of the Central Business District. Boasting an extensive urban growth, new public transportation, and more than 55,000 people who work in its neighboring businesses, The National will continue to spur prosperity downtown, encouraging the continuing development of Oklahoma City.
Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.
She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.