When it opened in 1923 as The Stoneleigh Court Hotel, it was a first-of-its-kind building that marked a very intriguing time in the history of Dallas itself, foreshadowing a century of legendary stories, celebrity visits, and a tradition of elegance and luxury that would become the trademark of Le Méridien Dallas, The Stoneleigh. Today, 95 years later, every bit of Le Méridien Dallas, The Stoneleigh’s storied past is carefully considered and showcased through the renovation of this historical landmark by acclaimed Studio 11 Design. The result is a reimagined restaurant featuring inspired French cuisine, refreshed gathering spaces, and a restoration of the landmark 11th and 12th floors, fondly known as The Penthouse, all boasting Le Méridien’s distinct mid-century modern approach to design and ‘Destination Unlocked’ positioning.
Renovation and Restoration of Historic 11th and 12th Floors
The historic 11th and 12th floors of The Stoneleigh – the first penthouse in Texas – have received a meticulous update and restoration to bring to life the many decades of decadence and historical significance that define them.
In 1934, a guest of the hotel, Col. Harry E. Stewart, fell in love with the hotel so much that he purchased it, and proceeded to expand and renovate it, while also making it his home. He created a penthouse, the first in the state, and asked renowned interior designer, New York-based Dorothy Draper, to design it. The 7,200-square-foot penthouse includes a 12th-floor terrace, 500-year-old English Oak paneling imported from London’s Charterhouse School by none other than William Randolph Hearst, ornate tile and plaster work, marble floors and even a secret passage, rumored to be a discreet escape route from late-night poker games. It was the perfect way to showcase Stewart’s collection of fine art and antiques, and served as the perfect place for the glitterati of the day to rendezvous. Col. Stewart lived in the penthouse until he sold the hotel in 1943.
Today, the penthouse features eight rooms, including the Grand Salon, Historic Gallery Hall, Library Bar, Music Room, Drawing Room, Dining Room, Dorothy Draper Suite and Presidential Suite. The Studio 11 Design team took great care in replicating Draper’s “modern baroque” style with new carpet, draperies, lighting fixtures, art and accessories to enhance some of the penthouse’s original jewels: the 500-year-old wood paneling, gold-plated mirrors from the 18th century, ornate plaster ceilings, marble floors and more. The design team ensured the interiors are chic, timeless, and dramatic with discovery moments of intrigue and fun.
New Restaurant: Perle On Maple
The Stoneleigh Hotel is proud to bring a new dining concept, Perle on Maple, to the exciting Dallas culinary scene. Because of the rarity of pearls occurring spontaneously in the wild, they have become a metaphor for something exceptional, fine, admirable and valuable, much like The Stoneleigh itself and its new restaurant. The French spelling of “pearl” is used to signify this restaurant’s sophisticated-yet-casual international cuisine concept that will offer an iconic and individual experience, from brunch bubbly to nightcap.
Executive Chef Wade Burch, himself a proud Texan, brings a cultivated palate from his training at the School for American Chefs at Beringer Vineyards and Windows on the World Wine School as well as numerous culinary positions at such prestigious locations as The Plaza Hotel in New York, The Pan Pacific Hotel in San Francisco and The Hotel Crescent Court in Dallas, among others. A celebrity in his own right, he also appeared on Food Network’s Chopped, winning his way into the finals of Chopped Champions.
To create Perle’s menu, Chef Wade took great care in selecting locally sourced ingredients. Diners will be able to explore and savor such items as Texas-raised Waygu beef from Rosewood Ranches, cheeses from Dallas Mozzarella Company, hydroponically grown heirloom tomatoes from Raindrop Farm in Central Texas, San Saba pecans, and microgreens grown just south of Dallas, among others.
The menu features bistro classics with a Texas twist, such as Duck Confit Pancakes, Bandera Quail wrapped in bacon with white bean cassoulet, and a variety of soups and salads including the much-loved French traditions like Nicoise Salad (in photo) and French Onion Soup as starters. Entrée selections offer an assortment of meat choices, from Striped Bass that is driven in daily from the Silver Streak Farms in El Camp, Texas to the signature Duroc Pork, a savory broiled pork tenderloin served with a spinach, grain mustard, and Calvados apples.
Drawing inspiration from Le Méridien’s Parisian roots, Studio 11 Design styled the restaurant in a mid-century take on modern baroque. French navy banquettes, gold leaf and blackened steel accents, and a signature white brick wall define the interior. A glass art installation, inspired by The Maison de Verre built by Peirre Charneau in the 1930’s, serves as the gateway to enter the restaurant. The indoor bar area is infused with relaxed seating, inviting a place to gather, linger and return. Alternatively, guests may enjoy the energy of Uptown seated next to a fire pit on the outdoor patio.
Perle on Maple is open seven days a week between 6:30AM to 10AM for breakfast, 11AM to 2PM for lunch, and 5PM to 10PM for dinner. For reservations, please call (469) 375-5846. For more information and complete menus check out the website.