After more than 100 years, Savannah has reunited with its beloved river once again in a vibrant, riverfront entertainment destination offering luxury hotel stays, incredible dining, wine tasting, and high-end shopping. But to reach this point, it took quite a transformation.
The site’s original 1912 power plant has been restored with the preservation of historic characteristics like the iconic twin smokestacks and brick exterior, and repurposed with the addition of hotel rooms and mixed-use space. Flanking either side are two new buildings, also featuring hotel rooms, restaurants, lounges, and meeting space. Along its shoreline, over a quarter-mile of riverwalk has been created.
Today the plant and its surrounding district generates a new kind of energy for the citizens and visitors of Savannah, bringing electric experiences once again to the riverfront.
The grounds on which Plant Riverside District stands have been a significant part of Savannah’s story for centuries—but at the turn of the 20th century, a new problem arose. The city was growing at such a rate, officials worried they would not have the capabilities to power it by the end of 1912. A solution was in order.
Thanks to the pioneering spirit of George Baldwin, and engineers from Stone & Webster, that solution was found along the Savannah River with the ambitious plans for Riverside Station. Starting in 1912, the electric power plant would become the most efficient plant in the south at its time. It would continue to power Savannah for more than 92 years before its decommissioning in 2005.
Today, the plant is powering Savannah once again with high-energy entertainment, dining, retail and luxury hotel rooms on the riverfront. What stands now represents the beauty of progress—connecting history to present, Savannah's legendary river with its storied community, and all who visit, to the generations of our future.
Will I be able to drive to the district?
Yes. While Savannah is mainly known as a pedestrian-friendly walking destination, Plant Riverside District, in partnership with the City of Savannah, is creating the first significant public parking resource on River Street, housing nearly 500 parking spaces, half of which will be open to the public. We will also offer valet parking.
What dining options will be available at Plant Riverside District?
Plant Riverside District will celebrate the arts through all facets of creativity and this includes food and beverage. It will feature more than a dozen culinary options, from a pizza restaurant and seafood and barbecue pavilions, to a steakhouse with private dining options for your intimate events.
Will there be live entertainment on the new riverwalk?
Yes. Founder Richard Kessler has a passion for the arts and music and has incorporated it as part of all facets of Plant Riverside District. The District's Martin Luther King, Jr. park will feature a performance platform on the Riverwalk, perfectly set up to host concerts with seating for over 500 people.
Will Plant Riverside District have entertainment for kids?
Yes. Plant Riverside District has something for all ages. Kids can discover fossils, artifacts, and a time when dinosaurs walked the streets of Savannah in the Natural Science exhibit, which includes interactive screens that will reveal stories of our prehistoric friends. A Natural Sciences Tour will also be available for families who want to take a closer look.
Will there be nightlife at Plant Riverside District?
Plant Riverside District will offer a variety of nightlife options, including three rooftop bars all offering handcrafted cocktails, live entertainment, and the best river views in the city. From a playful adult oasis featuring slides and life-size games, to a secret garden hideaway bursting with floral scents and sights, there are plenty of ways to elevate the evening.
What type of retail options will Plant Riverside District offer?
Plant Riverside District has a wide array of retail offerings, including high-end boutique shops, galleries, and more. Discover the perfect accessory, find a souvenir for a loved one, or fall in love with a unique piece of art along the riverfront.
Does the Plant Riverside District have spaces to rent for weddings and other private events?
Plant Riverside District offers luxury wedding and meeting space across our immense footprint(?). We offer 18,000 sq. ft. of ballroom space that transforms into breakout rooms, pre-function space. Additionally, we have unique spaces throughout the district to accommodate a unique and intimate experience for private parties, including an incredible rooftop deck.
What experiences will Plant Riverside District offer guests who are visiting for the day, not staying overnight?
At Plant Riverside District, all locals and visitors alike can explore the main Generator Hall featuring our 135-foot dinosaur, fossils, and minerals. Additionally, we have 13 dining options, rejuvenating treatments at Poseidon Spa, rooftop cocktails, a riverfront park, a quarter-mile of new riverwalk, retail shops, live music, and more.
How will the project work to preserve the original power plant building?
It is a main priority of The Kessler Collection to restore the 1912 historic Power Plant building back to its original condition so locals and visitors will have the chance to enjoy the magnificent architecture and beauty of the design. During the early 1900s, power plants were viewed as public edifices, resulting in significant civic design emphasis in the architecture. Kessler is taking all measures to preserve all original materials, working with architects that specialize in historic preservation.
Will you keep the plant's smokestacks?
Yes, Plant Riverside District's iconic 176–foot tall smokestacks are features of the Savannah skyline. They'll continue to anchor the west end of River Street, serving as a marker for the site's rich history and drawing visitors into the district.
Is the project designed to be sustainable?
We aim to create an earth-friendly, sustainable District. We've designed it using cutting edge sustainable building and site development practices, including advanced energy recovery technology, many reclaimed materials, excellent insulation, as well as efficient low-flow plumbing fixtures and a high-efficiency central plant, serving heating and cooling needs of the major buildings in the District.
How will Plant Riverside District connect with the river?
Plant Riverside District will enhance both views and direct access to the riverfront, with multiple public connections back to the city and a quarter-mile of new public river-walk. From streetmosphere entertainers and local artists, to a live music venue that will attract talent from all over the world, we are looking forward to reconnecting the city with the riverfront for the first time in over 100 years.
Can I purchase the art throughout the hotel?
Yes, the art that adorns the walls of the property are for sale.