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Press Release – Ruth’s Chris Coming to Grand Rapids

January 26, 2011

UPDATE (9.9.11) :  Lots of people coming to the site looking for info on Ruth’s Chris….click HERE for the new press release with opening date…

…but the it’s taking the place of the 1913 Room at the Amway Grand.  I never could afford the 1913 Room nor is it really our type of restaurant, but it’s one of Michigan’s only truly fine dining restaurants and it’s the only AAA 5-Diamond rating restaurant in the state.  There is a pretty good chance I will eat at Ruth’s Chris so the change will actually be better for me personally.  Just sad to see a restaurant like the 1913 Room go.


The 1913 Room to become Ruth’s Chris Steak House

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., (JAN. 26) – The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel (AGPH) today announced that it will transform The 1913 Room restaurant into a Ruth’s Chris Steak House by early fall 2011. The iconic, AAA Five Diamond, award-winning 1913 Room will remain open through late spring.  Plans to begin construction of Ruth’s Chris Steak House are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. All associates of The 1913 Room will be offered positions with Ruth’s Chris Steak House.

Founded in New Orleans by Ruth Fertel in 1965, Ruth’s Chris is the largest, family of upscale steak houses in the world with more than 130 locations, including New York, Portland, Atlanta, Chicago, New Orleans and Dubai.

“This is another exciting step forward in adding to the vibrancy of our hotel and downtown,” said Joe Tomaselli, president and CEO of the Amway Hotel Corporation.  “Ruth’s Chris is an internationally recognized brand and we’re especially thrilled to bring this `big city’ dining experience to the area, providing another solid attraction for local residents as well as the growing number of business and leisure travelers staying downtown.”

“The redevelopment of The 1913 Room to Ruth’s Chris Steak House reflects the hotel’s efforts throughout its history to continually look for opportunities to enhance guest experiences while adding to the vision of the downtown,” said Tomaselli.  The new Ruth’s Chris restaurant is expected to open around the same time as the AGPH celebrates its 30-year anniversary in September 2011.

Conversations between AGPH and Ruth’s Chris executives began several years ago as Grand Rapids emerged on its radar of growing, progressive cities.

“Grand Rapids is well-positioned for our globally recognized brand,” said Michael P. O’Donnell, chairman and CEO of Ruth’s Hospitality Group, Inc. “We’re thrilled to introduce Ruth’s Chris to new diners as well as those local residents and hotel guests who are already acquainted with the Ruth’s Chris dining experience.”

Tomaselli said Ruth’s Chris’ reputation for extraordinary food and impeccable service were important considerations in the decision.  Additionally, the Amway Hotel Corporation will own and operate the new Ruth’s Chris restaurant. This will be the second Michigan location for Ruth’s Chris. The first Michigan Ruth’s Chris opened in Troy in 1997.

“Ruth’s Chris guests can anticipate the same high service standards and quality that they have come to expect from The 1913 Room,” Tomaselli said.

Current plans call for The 1913 Room to remain open through late spring, maintaining its regular hours of operation; reservations are accepted at (616) 774-2000.

The 1913 Room opened in 1981, quickly earning rave reviews for its continental cuisine with a French influence, combined with exceptional service and a warm, luxurious setting. To pay tribute to this longstanding restaurant, the new Ruth’s Chris will feature a special private dining room called The 1913 Room.

“This is another milestone for downtown,” said Tomaselli.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 27, 2011 9:58 am

    I’m disappointed to see a locally owned restaurant being replaced by a chain; also not sure how many steak houses we really need downtown.

  2. Steve Lappenga permalink
    October 14, 2011 11:44 am

    I love Ruth’s Chris and the food is awsome. I know the quality is always great. Only one other steak house would be acceptable to me and that is Morton’s. The 1913 was getting old and needed an update. Ruth’s Chris is in a class by its self. As for the 1913, it is still there in a room by its self. Thanks to the DeVos’s for their support of Grand Rapids.

    • SW Michigan Dining permalink*
      October 17, 2011 9:37 pm

      It’s still a chain. Applebees is consistent and usually pretty good, but that’s kind of boring. I think Ruth’s Chris is good for Grand Rapids…I just wish it didn’t totally replace The 1913 Room….I would have rather seen The 1913 Room retooled and Ruth’s Chris someplace else downtown….

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