It’s no mirage – the Egyptian Motor Hotel, which has sat in the heart of Phoenix’s Grand Avenue District for more than 70 years, has been newly resurrected on its original turf and will open to the public soon. The Egyptian will be a mecca for nightlife, live entertainment, hospitality and dining through a partnership with Chilte, Phoenix’s favorite pop-up and food truck for new-school Mexican street food, which will open its first brick and mortar outpost. Longtime owners of The Las Palmas had a desire to breathe new life into this retro staple, so they partnered with Chicago-based hotel developer and management company Rebel Hospitality to create a relevant concept for today. The property will boast 49 retro modern rooms; Egyptian Live, a 250-seat outdoor bar and entertainment venue with games; and water and firepit features to add to the ambience; and, of course, Chilte.
“We are delighted to open the Egyptian and become an intrinsic and active contributor to Grand Avenue’s eclectic and creative corridor,” says Rebel Hospitality Principal, Gene Kornota. “The independent spirit and creativity that exude from this community are in perfect harmony with the ethos of the Egyptian, and it’s what inspired us to create a destination that could seamlessly become an integral part of downtown Phoenix’s epicenter for innovators, artists, and creators. With a mission to connect people and their experiences, the Egyptian is a spirited place to welcome guests and locals alike and show them the best of what this vibrant neighborhood has to offer. We are grateful for the support we’ve received from the Grand Avenue Members Association, downtown Phoenix, and the local community.”
The original Egyptian Motor Hotel was built in the early 1950s, clad with iconic Egyptian emblems, an exaggerated neon sign and open-air concept — all of which are preserved in its resurrected state today. In fact, the classic V-shape design and a repurposing of the parking lot made it possible to up the hotel’s cool-factor by making the stage and venue viewable from guest balconies, furthering the communal feel of the experience.
Property updates and amenities include:
- Egyptian Live: a 250-seat outdoor entertainment venue and nightly cocktail bar that will welcome local musicians, live art, magicians, comedians and more with performances year-round
- Chilte: serving locally sourced, artisanal street food from Chef Lawrence in his first brick-and-mortar outpost
- Acoustic guitars offered in select guestrooms
- Outdoor games including giant Jenga, foosball, corn hole and submarine races in the water feature
- Retro, yet modern design refresh in guestrooms ranging from stacked (bunk beds) to King offerings
- New technology in guestrooms including Marshall Bluetooth speakers and fast, free WiFi
- Coming soon: in the creative artistic spirit that defines Phoenix, outdoor murals painted by local artists
Chilte, the property’s flagship eatery for deliciously unique takes on traditional Mexican cuisine, is the first brick-and-mortar restaurant for Co-Founder and Executive Chef Lawrence Smith, whose cuisine has been captivating local appetites through pop-ups and a food truck across town since 2020. Chilte will introduce a fresh, innovative menu at the Egyptian, including aMole Flight, featuring three different moles inspired by Chef Lawrence’s travels to Mexico, and Elote Cheesecake, a sweet spin on beloved Mexican street corn with Mezcal, chili, fruit, corn, and queso.
“We’re still pinching ourselves to make sure we aren’t in a dream,” says Chilte Co-Founder Aseret Arroyo. “At Chilte, food serves as a source of connection to each other and our communities. It’s a universal language that brings us all together. We’re ecstatic to showcase our creativity at the Egyptian, which will connect visitors to the local community through all its offerings.”
Kornota added, “We invested quite a bit of time searching for a culinary concept to complete the Egyptian experience. We wanted a local partner with a vision that complimented ours and was still uniquely their own. We found that in Chilte. The brand radiates a passion for discovery through innovative ingredients and a genuine connection to the community.”