A brand-new,$250M hotel project near Chicago’s The Loop neighborhood has revealed its opening date and more details ahead of the fancy new project that aims to redesign the classic Essex Inn. Steps away from serviced apartment rentals,this Chicago landmark will be redesigned to give the old building new life while retaining elements that made it classic in the first place.

After being closed for renovations for nearly a year for renovations,officials say the building,now called Hotel Essex,is set to reopen on April 1st,and we’re pretty sure it’s not an April Fool’s joke designed to trick River North residents. The building,located at 800 S. Michigan Ave.,will retain the iconic sign that residents have known and loved,but most of the inside was gutted and upgraded over the past year.

John Rutledge,the CEO of a well-known Chicago hotel and resort company,is set to manage the facility.

“Historically,the Essex Inn was sort of a 3.5-star,tourist-class (hotel),with a lot of international tourists and travelers,” Rutledge said. “Our vision was to take a 3.5 star and turn it into a 4.5 star.”

A bistro located on the same property will have a heavy focus on meats and veggies,in addition to high-end cheese. The bistro,which will seat about 40 patrons at a time,will expand to 80 in the summer when a patio opens. In addition,24 people have seats at the bar,so everyone who wants to come check it out should have plenty of opportunity.

We feel like there’s a lot of momentum in the greater South Loop,” Rutledge told a Chicago Tribune reporter. “There’s a lot of nice,new residential and retail coming in,but the hotel product hasn’t caught up with that.

“We want to be the nicest lifestyle hotel in that part of town,” he said. “That’s the vision.”