AC Hotel opened in February 2020. For months, Little Rock had been humming with excitement of a new hotel in the downtown area. On March 10, 2020, I met a friend there to check out the new space. Upon arrival, we were immediately impressed with the hotel lobby’s stylish aesthetic and art-filled walls.
We settled in at the lounge to discuss the rumors of some vicious virus we were hearing about, not knowing that would be our last public place to visit before the world changed. Three days later, the city started shutting down, which is not an ideal scenario for a new hotel that lives on travel and people socializing in its lobby.
Recently, I visited the hotel again for an overnight stay, and can proudly say the AC Hotel has weathered the storm and is excitedly welcoming back travelers and locals alike.
The hotel’s accommodations are top-notch and the staff excels at delivering the best service. In addition to catering to traditional overnight guests, the hotel is specifically designed to entertain individuals in the lobby.
The lobby bar occupies the corner of the building with expansive floor-to-ceiling windows looking out onto Capitol Avenue and Louisiana Street. The space is modern and sleek, yet still warm and inviting with cozy sitting areas sprinkled among the tables. The refined decor mixed with the busy street scenes outside feels like a true urban retreat.
Only a short distance from the soon-to-reopen Arkansas Repertory Theatre, the essential Bruno's Little Italy and shops like Bella Vita Jewelry, the hotel lounge is the perfect place to cap off an evening downtown, or to start one with their daily happy hour, impressive wine list, signature cocktails and tapas-style dishes.
While the lobby and public areas have a very urbane look, as soon as you head to the rooms, the hotel’s historic charm becomes apparent. The hotel occupies the Hall and Davidson buildings — the Hall building built in 1923 and the Davidson annex added in 1947 — both of which are on the National Register of Historic Places.
Following a two-year restoration project, many of the original features remain, such as the marble walls and staircase, which has been polished smooth from years of wear. The building’s penny tile floors and brass mail chute are two of the most distinguished details that were saved during the renovation.
And with more businesses, entertainment and life coming to the heart of the city, the AC Hotel is exactly what Little Rock needs: a fresh place to stay and socialize downtown.
201 W. Capitol Ave.
Little Rock, AR 72201