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  1. Wednesday, July 1, 2020

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Digital Hotel Guide

Welcome to Louisville

Thoroughbred racing, fried chicken and some of the finest Bourbon you’ll ever sip. And that’s just what you already know about Kentucky.

The Bluegrass State has a reputation for Southern hospitality, delectable Bourbon and, of course, the Kentucky Derby. However, first time visitors to Louisville are often pleasantly surprised to find there’s even more to see and do. The city is a hotbed for vibrant arts, a haven for foodies and a historical charmer with parks, architecture and festivals at every turn. It’s home to a world-class ballet, the country’s twelfth oldest opera and a renowned theater scene. Annual cultural events, such as The Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre, attract creative minds from across the country; while quirky happenings like the Lebowski Fest and Forecastle Festival are equally at home in the River City.

As Louisville’s unofficial cultural epicenter, 21c is where guests, artists, performers, thinkers, innovators and locals alike all congregate for culinary delights, innovative artwork and a taste of the unique 21c experience. Both within our walls and beyond, 21c encourages our guests to explore all our neighborhood has to offer.

Need some inspiration? Visit our Louisville City Guide to start planning your adventure.


21c’s Red Penguins are proud to share Main Street with an exciting group of attractions, all within a short walk of our doorstep. Whether you’re a history buff, sports enthusiast, art lover or budding scientist, Museum Row houses something for you.

Other Museum Row attractions include:

Frazier History Museum

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory

Kentucky Performing Arts

Kentucky Science Center

KMAC Museum

Muhammad Ali Center

Evan Williams Bourbon Experience

Peerless Distilling Co


True connoisseurs are learning you don’t have to leave the city to sample the best Bourbon in Kentucky – just hit the Urban Bourbon Trail. Louisville’s Urban Bourbon Trail is a collection of restaurants and bars, each with over 100 bourbons to sample. Visitors can request a “Passport” at any participating establishment and embark on a delectable journey through the urban side of Bourbon. Make 21c’s award-winning restaurant and bar, Proof on Main, the first stop on your Urban Bourbon Trail adventure. Proof has hand-selected a unique collection of Bourbons that highlight the small-batch, artisan craftsmanship that reflects the history and culture of the region. Whether you prefer your whiskey neat or in a cutting-edge cocktail, you’ll find it at Proof.


From the stately avenues of traditional Victorian homes in Old Louisville to the burgeoning gallery scene of East Market Street’s hip NuLu District to the always-hopping Restaurant Row in the eclectic Highlands, Louisville’s neighborhoods are as distinct as the Bourbons we produce. Just a short drive outside the city limits, you’ll find miles of lush, rolling countryside that house Kentucky’s famed Bourbon distilleries and picturesque horse farms. For insider recommendations or driving directions, please feel free to contact our front desk team by dialing “0.”

 For additional resources on what’s happening in Louisville, visit

Explore 21c

21c is a multi-venue contemporary art museum located in nine cities across the U.S. One of the largest contemporary art museums in the country and North America’s only collecting museum dedicated solely to art of the 21st century, each property features exhibition space open free of charge, combined with a boutique hotel and chef-driven restaurant.

21c presents a range of arts programming curated by Museum Director, Chief Curator Alice Gray Stites, including both solo and group exhibitions that reflect the global nature of art today, as well as site-specific, commissioned installations, and a variety of cultural events. 21c collaborates on arts initiatives across the country, including with the North Carolina Museum of Art, MASS MoCA, Contemporary Art Museum Houston, The Barnes Foundation, Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati, Creative Capital Foundation, Creative Time, and others.

At 21c, art is integral to who we are and integrated throughout our spaces, providing opportunities for discovery and starting points for new connections and lively conversations. 21c creates innovative cultural centers for viewing thought-provoking contemporary art from all over the world. Exhibitions are installed in dedicated, publicly accessible galleries and artworks and site-specific commissions appear in elevators, public restrooms, courtyards, hallways, guest rooms, at the reception desk, in Proof’s dining room and bar, and beyond, engaging guests and passersby alike. 21c believes art can and should be part of daily life for everyone.

During your visit, we invite you to discover and explore the exhibitions and installations. 21c also presents a range of arts programming including film screenings, artist lectures, performances, and more, which are free and open to our guests and to the community. Check with the front desk team about what might be going on during your stay.

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Red Penguins were created for a commissioned public art project at the 2005 Venice Biennale by Cracking Art, a collective of artists who inspire people to consider art simultaneously fun and thought-provoking. Sculpted from recycled plastic, the fleet of 4-foot birds serves as a playful reminder of the importance of sustainability and environmental conservation. The sculptures migrate throughout 21c each day and night.


Created specifically for 21c in 2006, Ned Kahn’s Cloud Rings is a series of devices that continuously shoot rings of fog up into an exterior sunken courtyard space. When the rings of mist erupt from the sculptures, their shape and longevity is dependent on the current wind and humidity. The sculpture responds to its environment, drawing attention to the subtle beauty found in nature, while highlighting its unpredictable and ever-changing power. Cloud Rings is located between two buildings, visible from interior windows and from Seventh Street.


Conceptual artist Serkan Özkaya made David (inspired by Michelangelo), a double-size, golden replica of Michelangelo’s David, for the 9th International Istanbul Biennial in 2005. Days prior to the opening of the Biennial, the sculpture collapsed shortly after installation. After the collapse, the artist restored the damaged replica and cast two additional copies, one of which was acquired by 21c Museum in 2010. Özkaya’s strategic appropriation is a compellingly complex and very contemporary practice. His David (inspired by Michelangelo) pays homage not only to the original masterpiece, but to its cultural legacy and to its technological evolution through reproduction in a vast array of sizes and materials over the last five centuries. The sculpture is installed at the corner of Seventh and Main Street.


In these site-specific works, the blind eyes of seven individuals from a blind dart throwing club are captured on individual videos. The videos are displayed on small LCD monitors embedded in the public restroom mirrors and are edited to give the impression that the eyes are traveling from monitor to monitor, with each eye appreciating the entire view. In the Absence of Voyeurism #6 and #7 are located in the Men’s and Women’s restrooms off the lobby gallery.


This visitor favorite is an interactive installation in which participants use a familiar instrument – their bodies – to magically catch, lift and play with falling letters. Interacting with the video installation becomes both a physical and cerebral endeavor, as the falling letters are not random, but instead form lines from the poem Talk, You. by Evan Zimroth about bodies and language. Text Rain is located between the elevators on the first floor.


Artists Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe have created a site-specific sculptural installation that is also a functional hotel room, offering 21c guests a completely immersive art experience. The work is an evolution of the artists’ previous large-scale architectural collages, and extends their exploration of historical and narrative fictions, rogue science, and the contemporary urban environment, based on the counter-cultural artists’ community from the mid-1960’s known as Drop City. Constructed entirely of re-purposed barn wood, custom textiles, original sculptures, and other artworks, the room features a domed ceiling sculpture that recalls the geodesic designs of American architect Buckminster Fuller. A selection of records, chosen by Freeman and Lowe, is included, as are artist designed blankets, linens, and other curated components. A custom-built cabinet of curiosities includes collages, books, and small sculptures by the artists.


21c Louisville is proud to showcase a film and video artwork channel available in the guest rooms and the lounge at Proof on Main. The channel showcases a rotating selection from the 21c Collection of over 75 original works by artists from around the world, including Anthony Goicolea, Kenneth Tin-Kin Hung, chameckilerner, Hans Op de Beeck, and many others. The Art Channel also features Interviews and short-form documentaries on 21c artists including Wim Botha, Zoë Buckman, Chris Doyle, Fallen Fruit, Ebony G. Patterson, and many others. Content changes regularly with new selections from our collection being screened periodically. Stay tuned.

To learn more about the art exhibited at 21c, visit


Elevate at 21c presents exhibitions of works by artists living and working in the communities surrounding each 21c Museum Hotel property. Elevate provides hotel guests with unique access to the work of notable regional artists, while featuring their work in the context of 21c’s contemporary art space. At 21c Louisville, the following art installations inside the guest rooms are presented through the Elevate program.


Laura Lee Brown

Road, 2001. Photograph. This image, taken during a 2001 European art trip, shows the Amalfi Drive on the Amalfi Coast between the southern Italian towns of Sorrento and Amalfi.

Bison from Above, 1999. Photograph. A view of Woodland Farm from a cherrypicker. Woodland Farm is a working farm in Goshen, Kentucky with historical roots and a sustainable vision. The 1000-acre farm is home to many heritage breeds of livestock, including American Buffalo.

Echelman Repeat, 2014. Photograph. An image of Skies Painted with Unnumbered Sparks, an interactive instillation by Janet Echelman, photographed at the 2014 TED conference in Vancover.

Africa Wildebeests, 2011. Photograph. This image was captured during a photographic trip to Africa in 2011.

French Sheep, 1997. Photograph. Photographed during a 1997 trip to France.

Antelope Group, 1994. Photograph. This image is from a 1994 photographic safari in Botswana.

Camels, 1996. Photograph. Photographed in Pakistan in 1996.

21c co-founder Laura Lee Brown travels on photographic journeys all over the world, capturing the spirit and sensibility of the people and places she encounters. A selection of her photographs are on view in the 21c Louisville second floor guest rooms, sharing a range of these experiences, ranging from sheep in the French countryside and antelope encountered during a photographic safari in Botswana to a Roman road on the Italian coast and bison in a Kentucky field. “There are so many other ways to live, and I am curious to see, to learn, to understand,” says Brown. “All of these mysteries whip me around the world like a magnet. But curiosity is sometimes a double-edged sword: despite my mild addiction to global travel, I also succumb to homesickness, even while the rush to see what I may have missed quickens as the years pass.”

“The extraordinary range of places and faces so beautifully depicted in Laura Lee’s photographs suggest the presence of a keen eye, a thoughtful imagination, and a skilled talent,” writes 21c Museum Director, Chief Curator Alice Gray Stites. “In her artwork, Laura Lee invites the viewer on journeys to the faraway and the nearby, to lands and cities never seen, as well as into the eyes and lives of people we may never know, but with whom we have much in common. Hers is generous vision, and that generosity has shaped lives and communities in her home state of Kentucky and beyond.”


Rebecca Norton

Arrested Movement: Running Horse, 2017. Wood, vinyl, and glue.

Where is the Greener Green, 2018. Wood, vinyl, and resin.

Two different series by Rebecca Norton are installed in the 21c Louisville third floor guest rooms. Works from the series Arrested Movement: Running Horse, are located in the third floor rooms with single beds. This work plays with the visual performances of color and light, materials and environments. The shiny, reflective vinyl assembles the horse figure in motion. Dark wood-cut lines (nearly imperceptible in low lighting) add accent to the gesture of a horse when highlighted in daylight. Colors shift as the work is viewed from different perspectives, alluding to movements of a horse’s body as it strides forward along a flat plane. The artist says, “The vinyl becomes a ‘skin’ on the woodcut relief. I borrow the term ‘skin’ from French philosopher Merleau-Ponty who uses the word to denote a mode of perception and expression that informs the surface of a body. I use an underlying structure of differential geometries to configure patterns of movement, shape, and forms into a tangible representation of a body.”

Norton’s series Where is the Greener Green is located in the third floor rooms with double beds. The artist says, “I’ve struggled with sleep since an early age. Lying in bed, I assume those sleeping around me are resting heavily, enjoying deep rest. This makes me envious. Life, it seems, is better on the other side of the bed, or in the beds of others. As they say, ‘the grass is greener’ on the other side. As a painter, I wonder what color green is greener than the other greens?” In a visual exploration of the concept of envy and an investigation into the “greenest” shade of green, Norton’s work spans the headboard above both beds transitioning from a composition dominated by yellow shades of green to one with blue shades of green. This subtle difference calls into question our perceptions of the quality of our experiences as compared to others.


Chris Radtke

Gestures, 2016. Perforated polyester mesh.

Since 2004, the studio practice of Louisville artist Chris Radtke has focused on a series of three-dimensional works relating to body scale and presented in pairs as a reference to human genetic chromosomes. Each of the individual repeated forms is exactly large enough to contain her figure and recognizes the slip of personal space each of us occupies in the universe. As a continuation of that concept, she developed a series entitled Gestures exploring the idea of her body as a container. The artist explains: “Gestures is made of white perforated polyester mesh boxes sewn to my standing body scale and installed in pairs. The pairs are installed in various gestural positions that relate to each other. The polyester forms are pliable, not rigid, but have enough tensile strength to hold their ‘gesture’ yet still will gradually shift and relax over time as they respond to the environmental elements of heat, air currents, and gravity. Installed, the rectangular boxes become individually different organic forms.”

At 21c Louisville, one pair of the Gestures series is installed and centered over every bed in the fourth floor guest rooms. “The relationship of the human scale of the forms to the human scale of the beds becomes very interesting to me,” says Radtke, “as does the idea of two, a pair sharing a bed, as well as the visual connection between Gestures and the white rumpled sheets after a night’s sleep.  A hotel room can be a personal space, a place to unwind, a place to decompress, and, perhaps, a place to become intimate. That’s a good night.”

21c Amenities

More than simply a place to spend the night, 21c is an authentic experience. If there is anything you need during your stay, please don’t hesitate to dial “0” or stop by the front desk. Our team is always ready to help and eager to make your visit as memorable and unique as 21c itself.

Need to make a call? Use your IN-ROOM PHONE for:

Voicemail: Press the voicemail button on the phone or dial 6363

Room to Room calls: 7 + Room Number

Local calls: Dial 9 + Number

Toll Free calls: Dial 9 + 1 + Number

Emergency calls: 9 +911

Wake Up calls: Press the Wake Up button and follow the prompts to set preferred time

Usage fees will apply for:

Long distance calls: Dial 9 + 1 + Area Code + Number

International calls: Dial 9 + 011 + Country Code + City Code + Number

Traveling with a laptop? Your room is equipped with secure, COMPLIMENTARY WiFi. The front desk team can provide you with login information. If you do not have a wireless card, an internet cable is available in your desk drawer.

VALET SERVICE is available 24/7 for hotel guests, with in and out privileges. Please press the Valet button on your guest room phone to have your car brought around to 21c’s main entrance on Seventh Street just before Main Street.

21c offers all hotel guests complimentary access to our FITNESS CENTER. It is equipped with cardiovascular equipment, circuit strength training equipment, free weights, a steam room, and a sauna. The center is open 24/7 for your convenience; however for ultimate relaxation and to ensure a piping hot steam or sauna, please call “0” to ask our team to prepare the room. The fitness center is located on the lower level of the hotel. Take the elevator to the lower level. Upon exiting the elevator, proceed to the left and through the doorway.

Our BUSINESS CENTER is located on the first floor and open 24/7 for your convenience. Use of our computers with high speed internet and printers is complimentary for hotel guests. Need copies made or faxes sent? Our front desk team is happy to assist you.

During your stay, HOUSEKEEPING SERVICES will be provided daily. For the safety of our team and our guests we ask our housekeeping team to clean the rooms while our guests are out of the room. Please let us know what time works for you! Should you have any specific requests or needs, please contact our front desk team at extension “0.”

For your convenience, LAUNDRY SERVICE is available. Laundry bags and tickets are located in your guest room closet. For urgent requests, please contact the front desk for assistance.

An IN-ROOM SAFE is available for the security of any valuables. Please contact the front desk team if you need safe operation assistance.

21c Treats

Looking to indulge a special someone? Want to spark some romance during your own stay? Need to fuel up before embarking on the Urban Bourbon Trail? Whatever the occasion, 21c Treats entice you to splurge a little.

Simply call the front desk by dialing “0” to see what’s available and to place your order. Our team will hand deliver your Treat with a personalized note. Items may be subject to seasonality and availability. Please order at least two hours before your desired delivery time.

Looking for a bit more? The fine folks at Proof on Main are happy to create a culinary revelation guaranteed to wow. Whether you’re surprising a locavore, chocoholic, bourbon lover or someone in between, the Proof team can help with special requests.

Dining at 21c


Lauded as one of Southern Living magazine’s “Best Restaurants in the South,” Proof on Main’s seasonally inspired cooking references the culinary traditions of the American South. Menus pay homage to local farmers, artisanal producers and sustainable agriculture. Through partnerships with Woodland Farm and other regional producers, Proof’s menu showcases for the bounty of the Ohio River Valley. This commitment carries over to the bar where over 100 of Kentucky’s finest bourbons are stocked and seasonal, ingredient-driven cocktails are featured.

Follow Proof on Facebook

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Bon Appétit magazine: 10 Best Hotels for Food Lovers

Whiskey Advocate: 40 Best Whisky Bars in America

Tales of the Cocktail: Top Four Finalist Best American Hotel Bar

Food & Wine magazine: Best Farm-to-Table Restaurant in Every State


For the most up to date information on hours + menus, visit


Hosting an event or meeting? Let us wow your guests. With over 9,000 square feet of event space and a dedicated Event Team, we can accommodate parties that range from intimate gatherings of 10 to lavish receptions for 450 guests. Contact the Event Team at extension “6312” to learn more.


We aim to have a positive impact on the planet by taking steps to reduce our carbon, plastic and food waste – to do that 21c has implemented a 21c Sustainability Fee of $2 to help support that mission. Examples of our sustainability practices include providing every guest with PATH water bottles. PATH is the first certified refillable and 100% recyclable bottled water packaged in a sleek and sturdyreusable aluminum container. 

21c Safety

To improve indoor air quality, and for the health and safety of our guests and team,
21c IS A SMOKE-FREE HOTEL. Guests wishing to smoke can do so outside on the sidewalk
at our Seventh Street entrance. A fee of $250 will be assessed to any room in which signs or smells of smoking are found.


  • Please refer to the map on the back of your room door to familiarize yourself with the nearest emergency exit.
  • For the health and safety of all our guests and teammates, please regard all alarms as “the REAL thing.” Please stay calm and cooperate with our team while we work to ensure your safety.
  • During alarms, please do not attempt to use the elevator. Make your way to the nearest stairwell and exit the building.


  • If a fire breaks out in your room, immediately exit your room and close the door behind you to keep the hall clear of smoke and fire. Activate the nearest alarm pull station. Report the situation to the front desk team immediately.
  • If a fire breaks out in another part of the building, you may be roused by the fire alarm signal, voice announcements over the PA system, shouting in the corridor, a phone call, or by the sound of sirens outside. Stay calm. Check your door for heat before opening.
  • If hot, remain in the room and seal the door with wet towels and vent other openings. Alert the front desk immediately.
  • If cool, exit the room immediately. Do not attempt to use the elevator. Please use the nearest stairwell to exit and wait for further instruction before returning to your room.


The front desk team will keep up-to-date information on local conditions. Should evacuation of rooms become necessary, the front desk team will provide you with instructions on how to proceed.


Lock yourself in the guestroom and defend yourself against the inevitable horde of zombies. Feel free to use any guestroom items and/or equipment to protect yourself; no damage fees are likely to occur.


Front Desk | Dial 0

Fire, Police, EMS | Dial 9 + 911

KY Regional Poison Center | Dial 9 + 1.800.222.1222

Center for Women & Families Crisis Center | Dial 9 + 1.877.803.7577

Suicide Crisis Lifeline | Dial 9 + 1.800.273.8255

Jewish Hospital | Dial 9 + 587.4011

Norton Hospital  | Dial 9 + 629.8000

University Hospital | Dial 9 + 562.3000

Kosair Children’s Hospital |Dial 9 + 629.6000