I like staying in unique kind of places when I travel.  No monstrous hotels like Hilton or The Ritz for me.  I prefer something more adventurous and compelling.  Boutique hotels can be fun.  Bed and Breakfasts are a little too “up close and personal”.  Small inns are a must especially in places like Santa Fe, New Mexico or San Francisco. Well folks coming to Nashville will soon have another “cool” place to crash. Retail developer Mark Banks describes the five-room boutique hotel and restaurant he is creating from a former mechanics garage an “urban hideout.”

His 404 Hotel and Kitchen, opening this fall at 404 12th Avenue, is designed to offer travelers an alternative to large or mid-size hotels, offering what he calls “invisible service” led by one onsite manager. The idea is to let guests feel less like tourists and more immersed in the city.

It’s for “a traveler looking for something a little different, a little more unique in a booming part of town,” said Banks, who is principal at Retail Partners Development. “This is the kind of place my wife and I would try to find. … This is going to appeal to someone looking to have some elegant accommodations without too much fuss.”

As a developer, Banks said he keeps an eye out for interesting locations. After spending time at the neighboring Station Inn during the past few years, he noticed the nearby mechanics garage and approached the owner. After talking to people in the hotel industry, he learned about the Kimber Modern in Austin and decided a similar concept could work well in Nashville, especially in the Gulch.

“The Gulch is I think the center of what’s happening in Nashville right now, being surrounded by condos, apartments and new restaurants,” he said.

The 7,200-square-foot hotel is still under construction and his team is determining interior furnishing and design. Each room will have king beds with four including a loft living area connected by a winding stair case.

The restaurant seats 45 and is located in a storage container in front of the hotel, with the kitchen as a part of the hotel building. Chef Matt Bolus, who has previously served in chef positions at Flyte and Watermark in Nashville and FIG in Charleston, will offer a “modern take on classical European cuisine,” and the menu will be determined by available produce grown at local farms, including herbs grown on the hotel’s roof, said Libby Callaway, publicist for the hotel.