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April 16, 2010

Renovations could be in the works for the 13th Floor

the 13th floor looks cool in this picture, but in reality, it could really use an updateThe 13th Floor, the worn out lounge space at the tippy top of the Belvedere Hotel, could be getting a much-needed facelift later this year.

The Belvedere has new owners -- Mount Vernon Properties -- who bought the place last August, according to spokeswoman Averil Christens-Barry.

In the coming months, the new owners will be renovating the 12th floor ball rooms. The 13th Floor could be next, she said.

"We're working with some people, getting some ideas for what we can do up there," Christens-Barry said.

I have a few suggestions ...

As you may recall, I've spent some time complaining about how under-utilized the space is. It needs a new carpet, and those rope lights have got to go. New tables and chairs aren't a must, but would also be nice. And let's have a real stage there in place of the rickety old wood one.

Given the right attention, the 13th Floor could be -- should be -- Baltimore's go-to spot for upscale cocktails with a great view.

The 13th Floor needs a better drink list, top notch bartenders and managers and a new look. I hope the new owners are up to it.

(Baltimore Sun photo by Karl Merton Ferron)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 11:49 AM | | Comments (13)
Categories: Bars & Clubs


It's about time. The last time I was there it felt shabby and had a very lame bar staff. Not top notch at all.

Go change!

correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the Building is owned by it's condo association, and Mt Vernon Properties merely manages it for the association.

That said, yeah, an upgrade is in order. And maybe they can quit stabbing people in the basement.

Or change the name to Stabby McSwitchblade's

VoodooPork: You just made my day. HAHA! Great name. Many many years ago my prom was held at the Belvedere, and I thought the place was a hole. Great view completely wasted.

Chop, that sounds right. MVP is definitely a management company.

Regardless, I would love to see upgrades there. I've only been there once or twice but I've always been less than impressed and the view there is gorgeous and should definitely be utilized better.

There's also "Shanky O'Shiv's"

"Stabby McSwitchblade's"

LMAO post of the day

Very pleased to hear this. If the place cleans up nicely I'll definitely be one of the first to come back.

@Jennifer: I, too, had a Belvedere prom.


@Everybody: But if they rehab 13th Floor, where will I set my novel, A Shabby Room With a VIew?

Mount Vernon Properties does manage properties (about 40+ rowhouses in Mount Vernon), but the fact is that they own all the properties that they manage.

The 13th Floor Bar, 12th Floor Ballroom, 1st Floor Ballrooms, and the Owl Bar are all considered condo units, all previously owned by Truffles Catering, and now owned by MVP, who are well known for taking liberties with building permits and their disregard for historic preservation.

Anybody who cares about what is left of the historic Belvedere Hotel should be on high alert and vigilant about the kind of work MVP are doing.

The Belvedere Restaurant Group was owned by Tom Stuehler. He owned Truffles, all the ballrooms, the Owl Bar and 13th Floor. He sold a few months ago to the Persauds, who purchased all the space Stuehler owned, including three residential units. The Persauds also own Mt Vernon properties. The spaces are each individual condo and are not managed or owned by the residents.

I doubt much will change.

Based on my horrible experience renting from MVP a few years ago, I wouldn't get my hopes up for anything good happening at 13th Floor.

I love the Owl Bar but the food and service have been declining for years. The 13th Floor should discontinue the rotating live music theme and focus on being a classy place for drinks.

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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