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Celebrating Mother

Dee and Evan 1

Though the celebration of Mother’s Day can be traced back to the ancient Greeks and Romans, this year marks the one hundredth anniversary of Mother’s Day in the United States.  In fact, it was President Woodrow Wilson, past lunch guest of The Hermitage Hotel, who declared Mother’s Day an annual holiday in America.  He believed that there should always be a day that honored the sacrifices that mothers made for their children.

Some early traditions on Mother’s Day include: spoiling Mom with bunches of white carnations, cooking large meals to celebrate mom, and giving her a break from her daily duties.  One of the more modern traditions includes our increasingly present mobile devices.  Throughout the world, more phone calls are made on Mother’s Day than any other day.  In fact, phone traffic has been known to rise as much as 37% on Mother’s Day.

Mother’s Day is not only celebrated in the United States, but is a day of reverence world-wide. Here are just a few of the traditions celebrated around the world.

France: Children celebrate mom with presents and a cake that looks like a bouquet of flowers. Italians bake a cake in the shape of a heart.

Denmark: Mother’s day or Mors Dag is celebrated by children cooking breakfast for their mother and then celebrating with a fantastic lunch. Flowers are also the highlight of the day with spectacular arrangements delivered to moms throughout the country.

Ethiopia:  Celebrated in mid-Fall, Ethiopians travel home to their mothers for a three day celebration. Children bring ingredients (girls bring vegetables, butter, and spices while boys bring meat like bull or lamb) for a traditional hash that the mother prepares for the family. This is followed by three days of dancing and singing.

However you choose to celebrate, enjoy honor Mom this Mother’s Day!

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Celebrate Christmas with the Capitol Grille

Join us at the Capitol Grille for a Christmas feast fit for a king

The holiday season is in full swing. Children’s Christmas lists are getting longer, families are trimming their trees, holiday parties are already underway and folks are making final arrangements for their Christmas travels. It’s traditions like these that fill our hearts with memories. This year, why not add something special to your list of holiday traditions? Celebrate Christmas with The Hermitage Hotel.

Our doors will be open Christmas day for brunch and dinner. In addition to the Christmas lights spilling out of our lovingly decorated lobby and grand ballroom, smells of Christmas favorites will fill the hotel.

Join us for brunch or dinner and enjoy holiday favorites from Executive Chef Tyler Brown, Executive Sous Chef Andrew Kalmar, Chef de Cuisine Richard Neal and Pastry Chef Kayla Swartout.

Brunch Menu

Brunch will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Brunch will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Dinner Menu

Dinner will be held from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Dinner will be held from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

You can download the menus online by visiting our website.

Reservations are required (and going quickly!), so give us a call today at 615-345-7116.

If you’re not able to join us on Christmas day, stop in sometime over the holidays. Take a step inside, warm up (we’re also offering snacks of spiced hot tea and Christmas cookies in the lobby) and take a look around our Christmas decorations. As you ascend the staircase into the lobby and see the decorations, you’ll get that warm, fuzzy feeling your remember from childhood. Just around the corner, the grand ballroom is also decked to the nines. Share your photos of the decorations with us on Facebook and tag us on Twitter and Instagram at @HermitageHotel.

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More Green Acres


ImageDear Friends,

Many of you have followed us as we embraced, for quite a few years now, a local, sustainable culture at The Hermitage Hotel by sourcing our food and products and other amenities either from Nashville, Tennessee, or regional vendors.  We incorporated Hatch Show Print into website and décor in parts of the hotel, we sourced local artisans such as Vincent Peach and Linda Twist to highlight in Rachel’s Boutique, and we even went so far as to start our own garden at the Land Trust for Tennessee’s Farm at Glen Leven.  Next year, we will be changing out all of the mattresses in the hotel to beds that are made right here in Nashville.

Today, we are thrilled to announce the purchase of a 245 acre farm in Dickson Co, TN.  Double H Farms, as it will be known, is part of a bigger plan to expand our focus on preservation and sustainability.  The farm will be used to create a sustainable brand of beef that is distributed beyond the Capitol Grille.  It will also grow corn for a future grist mill and will eventually help expand the gardening program.

“The goal is to focus the future of The Hermitage Hotel and Capitol Grille by helping to preserve land, continue sustainable farming practices, and make our product more available to the community,” said Greg Sligh, managing director of The Hermitage Hotel and now also president of Double H Farms, LLC.

Farm operations will be overseen by Greg Sligh in cooperation with Executive Chef Tyler Brown and the rest of The Hermitage Hotel and Capitol Grille team.  Mr. Sligh has a strong family history in farming.  For more than a century his family owned a 600 acre farm in Missouri.  Mr. Sligh spent his summers and school breaks playing and, when old enough, working on the farm with his grandparents.  Today, he and his relatives still own and manage the original farm where he vacations with his wife and sons.

The purchase of the farm has been a long time goal born out of the experimenting with raising cattle at the Land Trust for Tennessee’s Farm at Glen Leven in partnership with farmer Blair Myers.  That project was spearheaded by Executive Chef and Head Farmer, Tyler Brown who will be actively involved, working with Greg to develop an ideal plan for the new venture.  The initial goal for this farm is to develop and increase the herd of grass-fed cattle.  Diners at the Capitol Grille have also been enjoying some of the beef which has been grazing in the sunny pastures at the Farm at Glen Leven.  However, with the increasing demands of the restaurant the larger amount of acreage allows for the herd to be increased significantly.  We also plan to sell the Double H Farms brand of beef to other interested restaurants in Nashville and elsewhere.

“For the past few years we have embraced the culture of locally sourced and sustainably grown food with the Capitol Grille and locally produced items throughout The Hermitage Hotel, with more to come.  This move will enable us to impact a much larger number of people,” said Executive Chef Tyler Brown

Nestled in the hills of White Bluff, Tennessee and bordering Montgomery Bell State Park, Double H Farms is an ideal setting with creeks that are fed by natural springs from the park.  This setting will allow for the rotation of cattle from one pasture to another to allow them to graze on the sweet grasses in the fields through a relatively simple process because of the infrastructure that already exists on the land.  The Farm is protected with a conservation easement and will always be a continuation of the Duke family’s home and farm, founded in the 1930’s.

Visit our Facebook page at The Hermitage Hotel – Nashville for more photos and updates on the farm.


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Coming Home to The Hermitage

Featuring Hermitage Guest: Dennis Bailey

There is no one quite as familiar with visiting The Hermitage Hotel than Illinois native Dennis Bailey. Over the last three years, he has accumulated more than 200 stays at The Hermitage Hotel. More specifically, in his home away from home, Room 904.

As vice president of strategic business development for Cardinal Health—a supplier for large hospitals whose biggest headquarter companies are in Nashville—Dennis travels to Nashville for business nearly every week and always stay at The Hermitage Hotel. He enjoys staying at The Hermitage so much that he makes the commute from downtown Nashville to Cool Springs, where the majority of his work takes place.

“For me, coming to The Hermitage is like coming home or going to a friend’s house,” said Dennis. “When you travel as much as I do, it’s nice to walk into the lobby, be greeted by your first name and treated like you’re part of the family. It’s the people that make all the difference.”

It’s the outstanding customer service and impeccable attention to every detail that keeps Dennis coming back. He recounts several instances in which the staff has catered to his every need, such as always finding handwritten thank you notes after every stay; knowing that his bartender always remembers exactly what he wants to drink; requesting off-the-menu meals and never being turned down; the hotel inviting him and his wife to the 100th anniversary celebration; and a staff member going to the pharmacy to fill his prescription and sending chicken soup to his room while he was sick with the flu.

“There is no other hotel like this in the country, and I have stayed in a lot of hotels! I have hosted the COO of my company and many business members at The Hermitage and they all say it was the best experience and service they have ever had,” recalls Mr. Bailey. “I have given up another hotel membership in order to continue staying at The Hermitage.”

Dennis knows that coming to the hotel means first-class, personal treatment along with warm smiles and friendly gestures from every staff member.

“The kind staff truly feels like old friends and family members. I can’t say enough good things about this extraordinary hotel, and the wonderful people and service I experience time after time,” said Dennis.

From the hotel’s perspective, having fans like Dennis Bailey is a goal they set for every guest that comes through the door. “For us, Dennis embodies the experience we strive to create for all of our guests. The idea is that they become more than guests, they become our friends.” said Janet Kurtz, the hotel’s director of sales and marketing. “We work hard to get to know each of our guests and it is genuine. This isn’t something that comes out of a training manual, or is a calculated ‘best practice,’ we just take the approach that our guests are real people and we genuinely care about them and their needs.”

Though Mr. Bailey has certainly visited The Hermitage Hotel the most, he represents hundreds of other guests who call the hotel home when visiting Nashville.

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It’s a “Hatch” Made in Heaven

The Hermitage Hotel and Hatch Show Print make a perfect match. So much, in fact, that the two groups were recognized with three ADDY Awards for the unique looks used to celebrate the Hermitage Hotel’s Centennial Anniversary.

Creative Director and Designer Bob Delevante’s use of Hatch Show Print’s distinctive style and typography garnered a Gold ADDY for the Hermitage Hotel luncheon menu in the sales promotion category. Additionally, the pair received a Silver ADDY for the hotel menu system in the sales presentation campaign category and another Silver ADDY for the Hermitage Hotel 100th anniversary luncheon invitation in the special event material campaign.

Check out the winning materials below.

Warmest regards,
Janet Kurtz
Director of Sales and Marketing
The Hermitage Hotel

Hermitage Hotel 100th Anniversary Lunch Menu

Hermitage Hotel's menu system

100th Anniversary Luncheon Invite

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We’ve “Hatched” a New Website

The Hermitage Hotel “hatched” its new website today:

Admirers of another century-old institution will recognize the uniquely Nashville look of Hatch Show Print. Both The Hermitage Hotel and Hatch preserve the craftsmanship and cultural heritage that make Nashville what it is.

Take a moment to visit out the new site and, while you’re there, take a peek at our Glen Leven page to see what we’ve been doing in the garden. Hungry? Go to the Capitol Grille’s website and review our new Spring 2011 menu while you’re there.

We can’t wait to see you at The Hermitage!

Warmest regards,
Janet Kurtz
Director of Sales & Marketing
The Hermitage Hotel


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January 2011

We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Years Day – Edith Lovejoy Pierce

I love January. It’s full of optimism and possibility for the year that lay ahead. The quote above makes me want to buy a new journal, turn the crisp pages and begin filling them up with all my hopes and dreams for this year.

If you follow our Facebook page or our Twitter handle, you’ve seen the accolades for which we’ve linked, tweeted and thanked countless reporters and local media folk. 2010 was a whirlwind year for us but it was a successful and thrilling one to boot!

Suffice it to say, we would not have had the year or century that we had without every one of you, dear readers and followers. We are made better thanks to your loyalty, your reviews and your friendship.

In 2011, we’ll keep on keeping on with what makes our hearts sing. Thanks for being there with us every step of the way.

Happy 2011, Everyone! May this year be your best one yet!
Janet Kurtz
Director of Sales and Marketing
The Hermitage Hotel

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An interview with Ron Gobbell, of Gobbell Hays Partners, Inc. about the 2003 restoration of The Hermitage Hotel

What was the most challenging part of the 2003 restoration?

The most challenging part was working on the historic building’s restoration in a delicate way so as to ensure that the façade looked like we hadn’t been there at all. The goal of the project was not to completely rebuild a then-90 year old building, but to enhance its best attributes and ensure its preservation.

Tell us about the interior restoration.

About five or six people from the architecture firm worked on site daily. They put in thousands of hours of work. Everything that a guest sees and touches was worked on by the firm and restored in a very careful manner.

In the ceiling of the lobby there are 28 separate paint colors that were meticulously chosen by an entire team to best enhance the architectural features of the space while remaining as faithful to its history as possible. We brought in a lighting consultant from Washington to consult on how to light what was essentially a very dark, huge space. All the fixtures were custom made. A lot of restoration work went on in the ballroom. We carefully stripped away the old, dark finish and revealed the gleaming burled walnut that you see today.

The central floor is made of three Tennessee marbles found in Knox, Blount and Sevier counties in East Tennessee. The pink marble in the entryway that leads up the stairs to the lobby could never be replicated. Even if it was harvested from the same quarry, 90 years have passed and the marble is different now than it was then. We harvested the Tennessee marble from what materials we could find and then rearranged the existing marble until we found a pattern that we all liked.

The result of the months of hard and dedicated work was magnificent. We remained true to the hotel’s historic Beaux Arts style and were able to restore many of the hotel’s original features.

Additional information about the 2003 restoration can be found in Ridley Wills’ book “The Hermitage at 100.” Interviews with Ron Gobbell can be arranged by contacting the Bradford Group at 615-515-4888.

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Bonnie Brunson Carroll sure knows her Hermitage Hotel history

The Hermitage Hotel has been a Nashville staple for nearly 100 years and in that time, the hotel was part of a lot of fascinating things.  To honor the hotel’s expansive history, we recently ran a trivia contest on The Hermitage Hotel’s Facebook Fan Page.  The winner of the contest (and recipient of a free night’s stay for two at The Hermitage Hotel and Ridley Wills II’s book “The Hermitage at One Hundred”) was Bonnie Brunson Carroll.

Here are some sample questions.  For answers, scroll down.

1.  What was the final cost after Historic Hotels of Nashville, LLC bought the hotel and land in June 2000, and paid for extensive interior and exterior renovations?

A. $27 million

B. $31 million

C. $36 million

2.  What is interesting about the chandelier fixtures in the Hermitage Hotel’s ballroom?

A. They were temporarily removed when billiards legend Minnesota Fats held pool tournaments.

B. The ornate fixtures are the 1910 originals and are still in use today.

C. President Lyndon Johnson was so impressed with the chandeliers he had a replica placed in the White House library.

3.  The Hermitage’s Francis Craig did what for his beloved Vanderbilt Commodores in 1938?

If that wasn’t enough, we are about to unveil the biggest contest yet.  So if you aren’t a fan, now’s the time!  To join the Hermitage Hotel’s fan page, search “The Hermitage Hotel – Nashville” on Facebook and click the “Become a Fan” tab.

Take care,

Janet Kurtz

Director, Sales & Marketing

The Hermitage Hotel

P.S.—The Hermitage Hotel is on Twitter, too!  For up-to-date information, latest news, contests and giveaways, search @hermitagehotel and send us a tweet!


1.  The correct answer is B – The final cost was $31 million—$14 million for the building and .54 acres of land, and $17 million for the renovations.  And worth every penny according to Judy Veeneman’s facebook post.

2.  The correct answer is B – The chandelier fixtures are the 1910 originals and are still in use today.

3. Craig wrote Vanderbilt’s fight song, “Dynamite,” a few days before the Commodore football team was set to take on the University of Tennessee. On Saturday mornings before Vanderbilt games, WSM broadcast a pregame show from the Hermitage Grill that featured the Francis Craig Orchestra playing the fight song.

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Flood Updates from The Hermitage Hotel

Hello from Nashville! I am sure many of you have seen the devastating images of Nashville after the flooding this weekend. It is heartbreaking to hear the stories of our team members, friends, and neighbors throughout the city who have lost so much through this event. Fortunately, help and rescue efforts began immediately and relief is pouring in from all over the state. (Which is why we are called the Volunteer State.)

That said, we do want to reassure you that Nashville, and The Hermitage Hotel, are ready to welcome you to the city. The airport is open, flights are landing, and the roads leading to downtown Nashville are clear. Of course The Hermitage Hotel is open and fully operational, as is the award winning Capitol Grille. To date we have had no damage to any part of the hotel.  Finally, our entertainment venues are still making the music that has made Nashville what it is today.  In fact, venues that were booked with entertainment but have been affected by the flooding have relocated those shows to other venues in the city. Many of them are right across the street from The Hermitage Hotel.

Please let us know how we can make your stay more special. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Warm Regards,

Janet Kurtz
Director of Sales & Marketing
The Hermitage Hotel
231 Sixth Avenue North
Nashville, TN 37219
Direct: 615-345-7120
Fax: 615-242-8715
Tennessee’s only AAA Five Diamond and Forbes Five Star award winning hotel.

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