I can still smell the fresh paint as part of the new hotel smell of the first Caption by Hyatt hotel property in the world — which officially opened to guests on Wednesday, June 29, 2022 on a beautiful but hot sunny day in Memphis — and members of the staff confirmed to me that I was the absolute first official guest to ever check in to this new brand.
Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis Complete Review — and The Verdict Is…
This is currently the most extensive and detailed review of the a Caption by Hyatt hotel property — which includes at least 92 photographs — so please be advised that this review is lengthy.
Caption by Hyatt is officially described as “the upscale, select-service lifestyle brand that attracts conscientious locals and guests throughout the day to use its social spaces to connect and interact with one another and the places around them — redefining what hospitality looks like in the modern world.”
”A vibrant Memphis hotel near Beale Street — yours for the making” is the text found on the official Internet web site of theCaption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis hotel property. “Our name may be on the door, but you kinda run the place. Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis is where you can do you, from using your phone as your key to making yourself at home and soaking up the community vibe. Kick back and sip a local craft brew in the Beer Garden, hang out with friends, or catch up on work”.
Unlike the typical grand entrances to many hotel properties, the only clue as to the entrance of the Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis on South Front Street is the ersatz marquee — similar to that of a movie theater — with custom messages on it.
For the grand opening of this hotel property, the message was “HEY Y’ALL WE’RE OPEN!” That was nice to see upon arrival, as there was a possibility that the hotel property might not open in time if construction was behind schedule and not completed.
Immediately after entering through the first of two glass doors which comprise the official entrance to the Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis, a third glass door on the right is the entrance to the outdoor patio area. That glass door is shown in the background of the above photograph.
Although the patio area known as the Beer Garden is outdoors, it is enclosed on three sides by the building itself, with the fourth side partially enclosed by the white facade. Plenty of seating options are available; and the live tree and plants help to soften the industrial aesthetic of brick, glass, and steel.
The above photograph shows the other end of the Beer Garden, with a large flat screen television. The aforementioned facade is on the right side. Fans overhead help to keep patrons in the Beer Garden from being too hot…
…and if you are in the Beer Garden long enough, a member of the staff will come over to you and take your food or beverage order if you are hungry or thirsty.
Talk Shop Lounge and Lobby Area
Enter through the second glass door to be in the lounge area of the ground floor of Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis called Talk Shop, which has plenty of seating and ambient modern music playing in the background.
Food and beverages can be ordered all day long at the counter, which has a hip coffee house vibe — or a member of the staff will come over to you and take your food or beverage order if you are hungry or thirsty.
Although menus are mounted on the wall, menus on paper are also available. One menu is for breakfast; the other for the remainder of the day and into the evening. The breakfast menu actually had two pages; but the menu was not printed on both sides of the paper.
The long counter wraps around in the shape of a capital letter L, which is where the area to pick up food is located — as well as more tables and chairs on which to eat, drink, work on your laptop computer, or simply relax. The glass doors are the rear entrance to the building.
Beyond the counter is an area where snacks and beverages may be purchased.
Sitting on the counter was this plate of food, which on the menu is referred as Netta’s Chicken Sammy.
Plenty of assorted seating is located in what is called the Gathering Space, which is connected to the Talk Shop lounge and can host planned or impromptu gatherings. Outside of the wall of glass windows is the Beer Garden; and beyond that is South Front Street. The entrance to the hotel property is in the background on the left of the above photograph.
Rather than let the lobby dominate the ground floor of Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis devotes a small area on the right side with several stations where guests can check themselves in electronically with a streamlined operating model called the Mobile-First Welcome Area…
… although a member of the team at the hotel property is available to assist guests as well. Some members of the team were apparently participating in some last minute training on the reservation system itself.
In an enclosed room near the area where guests can check in is a small recreation room, which contains a billiard table — and behind the billiard table in the corner where the brick wall meets the wall of glass windows…
…is this small lamp. Retro electric lighting fixtures are found throughout the hotel property.
A large flat screen television is also included in this enclosed recreation room.
Another wall of glass windows where the entrance is located overlooks the remainder of much of the ground floor of Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis.
A walk around to the other side of the Mobile-First Welcome Area reveals a view of the Talk Shop area — as well as the wall of glass windows which overlooks the Beer Garden. Behind the row of narrow red pipes…
…is an area of items which are for sale — including books, stainless steel vacuum insulated containers for beverages, coasters, and a few assorted sundries.
Adjacent to the Mobile-First Welcome Area is a set of empty clipboards sorted by day of the week — as well as shelves of books and plants. The entrance to the aforementioned small recreation room is on the right…
Water Closets — or Public Toilets
…while access to the public toilets — which is called WC for water closets — is on the left of the set of clipboards.
At least five fully enclosed toilets are located in the water closet area, which ensures complete privacy to do what one must need to do…
…and none of them are specific to any gender — despite the suggestion by the whimsical graphics next to the handles on the doors — but at least two of them are accessible for anyone who is considered disabled.
A look inside of one reveals a toilet and an electric hand dryer — as well as a sink with a mirror — integrating that retro ambience throughout the hotel property.
Passageway to Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis
Guests of the first Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis have access to Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis without ever having to go outside, as a corridor connects the two hotel properties.
In the corridor between the two hotel properties is a picture of Wm C. Ellis & Sons, which was an ironworks and machine shop on the land before the hotel properties were built. Opened in 1862, it was one of the oldest businesses in Memphis before it permanently closed in December of 2016. The facade of the Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis was restored and preserved from the former warehouse.
Turn left at the corner to continue down the corridor. The entrance to Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis is on the right between the two open solid doors…
…and one winds up entering the lobby of the Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis hotel property.
A wall of blueprints is another piece of artwork which is hanging on the wall in the corridor of old brick walls between the two hotel properties.
All the way at the other end of the corridor is a large open room with doors to another closed large dark room — apparently an area of ballrooms for both hotel properties. On the left is the entrance to the courtyard of Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis.
Although the swimming pool is on the grounds of the Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis, guests of Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis have full access to the courtyard, as both hotel properties are under the same management…
…with a third hotel property ready to be constructed: the Grand Hyatt at One Beale in Memphis — at least, that is what might be the official name of the hotel property.
Elevator to the Guest Rooms
The elevator area has plenty of art on the walls…
…although across from the elevators is a sitting area with a blank wall — save for a piece of art work hanging on it.
The inside of the elevator of the hotel property — which has ten floors — is nothing special. On each floor across from the elevators is a telephone to be used for emergency communications.
Next to the emergency communications area is more art work on the wall. The two elevators are located on the right side; and rooms can be accessed in either direction.
The wall indicates where filtered water and ice are located.
Turn right after leaving the elevator area; walk a few steps; and instead of some dingy old room with an old-fashioned ice machine — in which the ice can potentially be contaminated — that is found in many hotel and resort properties, a nice small area in the hallway includes a modern machine with which to get filtered water and ice. Either cubes of ice or crushed ice may be selected, which is another nice feature.
Unfortunately, I noticed two issues with the machine — both of which involved a clear plastic bottle of water: one is that the water was not immediately cold — ice would not fit through the neck of the bottle — and the other is that I had to use the plastic room key card to activate the dispenser to fill up the bottle with water. Otherwise, this unit far surpasses the typical ice machine found in most hotel and resort properties — and it also ensures that every guest has access to as much drinking water as he or she wants.
Rooms are either located near windows — or not near windows…
…with the room numbers indicated in large blue stenciled numerals on the side of each door.
This is the view outside from the window in the hallway which is adjacent to room 8808.
Upon entering the room, on the left is the bathroom — but on the right is a mirror and three handles of spigots which function as hooks for clothing or other items which can be hung.
Although the mattress was slightly soft, the bed was comfortable.
The room was not large; but it was not small, either — but it seemed to be larger than the room I was in at my first stay at the Tru By Hilton Oklahoma City Airport.
As with other areas of Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis, retro electric light fixtures were included in the room — including one with a dimmer switch that hangs over a loveseat of sorts with cushions…
…but they used electrical outlets. The room had an ample number of electrical outlets; but several of them were used by the light fixtures.
A desk was not found in the room. Only a small table was available on which to work. Also, the wall opposite the bed was rather plain and blank — even with both a large flat screen television and a decal of a plant affixed to it.
The room does include plenty of lighting all around it — even on each side of the bed.
The small tables on each side of the bed had a look of chip board and acted as night stands.
On each table were two electrical outlets and two USB ports…
…one set of which was included on top of the alarm clock.
Rather than a closet, the room has places to hang clothes and store a few items — most of which are in plain sight. If you need more than eight hangers, you may need to contact a member of the staff for more of them, as no dresser is in the room in which you can fold and store any clothing — or any other items, for that matter. In addition to a place where one large piece of luggage may be stored, one can remove the iron to store items in its cubbyhole — or, perhaps, items can be stored in the safe. An ironing board is also included in the “wardrobe” area of the room.
If you have more than two pieces of luggage, storage of your items will be an issue.
A small refrigerator with a glass door is included in the room — food and beverages can be chilled in it; but the temperature was not very cold. The room is not equipped with a microwave oven.
On a shelf which was located above the small refrigerator were two glasses, an ice bucket, a bottle opener, and a remote control for the television, which can perhaps be placed elsewhere to create a space for additional storage — especially as an electrical outlet is located there.
Magnets under which notes can be placed on a blank black area above the refrigerator are some of the cutesy kitschy items which filled the room…
…as well as this hanging Do Not Disturb sign.
Although the room was not terribly hot, the lowest temperature which the thermostat could be set was 69 degrees Fahrenheit. I am not sure if it was purposely programmed that way to save energy.
The entrance to the room includes the aforementioned mirror and spigot hooks on one side, with the door to the bathroom on the other side.
One thing about being the first guest ever in a hotel room is that everything is nice and clean — and probably other than for testing purposes, never used before.
The vanity to the bathroom has plenty of space on which to store toiletries and other items.
This is what the mirror above the vanity looks like when the light behind it is turned on.
The shower stall is not completely private, as the door to enter it is comprised of glass — but it is hidden from view of the toilet in case someone else needs to use it; and it does keep the water from spraying out into the rest of the bathroom.
The shower is equipped with both an overhead rain shower head and a nozzle which can be held in one hand — but both cannot be used at the same time. The drain is a long narrow plate on the floor of the shower stall.
The rain shower head definitely did what it was supposed to do.
This is the control to the shower, as manufactured by Symmons.
One of the advantages of being the first guest ever in a hotel room is that the bulk dispensers had never been used by anyone else at all. Look at how clean are the nozzles to the bulk dispensers of Apotheke shampoo, conditioner, and bath gel based on plants — with the contents manufactured in Brooklyn, mind you…
…and a small bar of soap and a small bottle of body lotion were also on the vanity in the bathroom.
Pipes act as hooks on which to hang towels. The note in the cartoon bubble is the following text:
Feel free to reuse your towels as much as you’d like. And if you want fresh ones, just leave them on the floor.
Above the wainscoting is a continuous mural depicting what is iconic about Memphis; while under the vanity where the sink is located is a bright yellow electric hair dryer.
I was not fortunate enough to score a room with a view of the Mississippi River, which will eventually be blocked by the aforementioned Grand Hyatt hotel property which is under construction…
…but I did get a view of the municipal parking garage across South Front Street.
Somewhat of a glimpse of Beale Street — which is the area illuminated with colored lights — was part of the view from my room.
Opening in 1913 as the Hotel Chisca — which was at one time the largest hotel in downtown Memphis — the building has since been converted into apartment homes for residents who want to live in the center of it all in downtown Memphis.
This is one of the views from my room after the sunrise the next morning.
The downtown area is definitely being gentrified with new residences — and the photograph below shows that portion of Beale Street during the day.
Final Boarding Call
For being the first guest in the world at a Caption by Hyatt hotel property, I received some tokens of appreciation.
The room rate was $139.40, but with all taxes and fees included — no mandatory resort fee is involved here — I paid a total of $173.81 for the night.
Although only valet parking is offered at this hotel property, I easily found free parking on the street fewer than two short blocks away.
I recommend staying at the first Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis hotel property, as the members of the staff were exuberantly friendly and quite accommodating to ensuring that every need of mine was met; the location is conveniently central to downtown Memphis; and the room was comfortable and quiet…
…and with the hotel property being brand new, everything was clean.
Caption by Hyatt Beale Street Memphis
245 South Front Street
Memphis, Tennessee 38103
All photographs ©2022 by Brian Cohen.