The Darling Hotel to open soon in downtown Visalia

VISALIA, Calif. (KFSN) -- The Darling Hotel is ready to make its debut, giving new life to Visalia's old courthouse annex building, which sat empty for years.

The renovation project took less than two years to complete, but Matt Ainley, one of the hotel's owners, made sure the building's Art Deco style was preserved.

"We were able to really keep the gist and the original feel of that intact, while providing the kind of upscale boutique, hotel experience and restaurant experience that hopefully gets people pretty excited," Ainley said.

The Darling has 32 rooms, including standard guest rooms and suites.

There are two terraces on the ground level, and there's a restaurant on the rooftop.

Elderwood features outdoor seating and some spectacular views of Visalia.

The hotel will also host events, including weddings, meetings, and parties.

Downtown Visalians' Steve Nelsen knows The Darling will draw more visitors downtown - it's just a block away from Main Street.

"I think people who will be staying there, they'll be walking downtown," Nelsen said. "They can actually spend time downtown."

COVID-19 will delay an official grand opening for the hotel.

But The Darling is taking reservations now for stays starting on July 1st.

Ainley says they'll be following state and CDC guidelines to keep guests safe.

"We're excited to host California. We're excited to host the Central Valley. We're excited to host Visalia," Ainley said.
Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.