Too many Milwaukee natives are living right outside the Pfister’s famed red awning and miss out on the history, fun, grandeur, and amazing food, art, music and cocktails this place is packed with. Maybe we don’t think to stay in a hotel when our own bed is a few miles away, we mistakenly think Blu is only available to overnight guests, or we don’t take the time to be courted by our own city’s history, but I’ve made it my mission to tell my Milwaukee friends that not only is the Pfister worth coming to if you live in Milwaukee, but you’re not truly getting the full Milwaukee storyscape if you don’t.
So I’ve been inviting my friends and family to experience Margaret’s incredible tintype studio, eat with me in the café, drink with me in Blu, wander the halls, and attend our book club (the first meeting is next Thursday!!!)
My friend Rhonda didn’t need to be told how amazing the Pfister is—she’s been coming here for years, since she discovered its charms in her early 20s while taking a hotel tour with friends. She loved the Pfister’s “homey classiness”, and soon after the tour she booked a room for a girls’ night, which was so much fun that a few years later she booked another overnight to celebrate her mother’s birthday.
Snuggling up at the lobby fireplace with a hot cocoa dashed with mint liqueur became Rhonda’s favorite cozy way to relax in winter. She started bringing friends to Blu after concerts. When she discovered how magical the Pfister is at Christmas, she began coming for the tree lighting and now brings her three year old son to visit the festively adorned “Christmas lions” in the lobby every year.
But it was three years ago, when she discovered Mason Street Grill, that Rhonda really fell for the Pfister, asserting that the restaurant has one of the best happy hours in the city.
“The quality of the drinks for the price is amazing. And those clam strips!”
The Phil Seed Trio on Friday evenings, which she describes as great R&B soul that gets people dancing, is what impresses Rhonda most: “Look at the Pfister, rocking up in here!” The Trio is what brings her back over and over.
Rhonda is an honest and insightful person to talk to about pretty much anything. This morning, we chatted about theology and churches, raising our children, social justice, her travels, prayer, community, what’s next for her professionally, and living authentically. Rhonda is someone who refreshes your spirit just by her proximity, and I leave glad to know her, glad to be able to spend time with her in the Pfister we both love, and determined to head to Mason Street soon to dance and devour some clam strips.