This New Baltimore Hotel Is in a Gorgeous 100-year-old Building — With a Train Car–inspired Bar

Embracing Charm City's peculiarities through distinct design.

Interior of Blooms, the bar at Ulysses Baltimore. Magenta pinks and reds with mirrors as design details

Brett Wood

A newly opened hotel in Baltimore is giving a second life to one of the city's historic, Italian Renaissance–inspired buildings.

Ulysses, the fourth property by New York–based hotel brand Ash, opened its doors on Sept. 21 in the city's elegant Mount Vernon neighborhood. The hotel takes residence in a building dating back to 1912 (the Baltimore Sun described it at the time as "fitted with many of the latest conveniences" and having "many quarters especially designed for bachelors").

Exterior of Ulysses Baltimore hotel

Brett Wood

Interior lobby with mosaic flooring and yellow hued room clawfoot tub

Brett Wood

"Ulysses seeks to be a magnet and a home base for Baltimore-curious out-of-towners, while also serving as the day and night headquarters for Baltimoreans seeking high culture with a dash of debauchery," Ari S. Heckman, CEO of Ash, told Travel + Leisure.

The hotel — starting with a name that references the ship that brought Bavarian immigrants to Baltimore at the turn of the century — is a creative ode to the city's peculiarities. Its distinct design aesthetic, created entirely by Ash, is inspired by art deco palaces and the work of legendary movie director and Baltimore resident John Waters, among other things.

Double bed guest room in yellow hues at Ulysses Baltimore

Will Cooper

Each of the 116 rooms and suites feature custom bath toiletries, hand-beaded lampshades, custom textiles, wall-to-wall carpet, and tapestry-like draperies, with references to Turkey, India, and Lebanon. Handmade quilts created in the style of the famous Baltimore album quilts cover the beds and, with their bright colors, become the focal point of each guest room. The bathrooms are equally eclectic, with custom vanities, unusually shaped mirrors, and clawfoot bathtubs in the suites. All rooms are outfitted in one of four different color schemes — red, yellow, green, and blue.

"You could book the same [category] room as your friend or colleague and have a completely different experience," Will Cooper, chief creative officer of Ash, told T+L.

The public spaces take design cues from historic architecture. The lobby has a beautiful mosaic at the entrance paying homage to the loggia of the Petit Palais in Paris, for example.

The hotel's Ash Bar and Bloom's bar are perfectly in sync with Ash's philosophy of bringing "the best stuff of the Old World, made suddenly new," said Cooper. Ash Bar serves contemporary fare and cocktails in a dining room inspired by steam train cars and ocean liners from the 1920s and 1930s.

Interior of the blue guest room and bathroom at Ulysses

Will Cooper/Courtesy of Ulysses

Interior of the pink guest room at Ulysses

Will Cooper/Courtesy of Ulysses

"The palette derived from high papal outfits or royal purple and crimson, juxtaposed with fully mirrored walls and ceilings, a mirrored bar. It is a room of contradictions and meant to instill a bit of naughtiness and chaos," explained Cooper.

Guest rooms at Ulysses start at $169 a night, and you can book a room here.

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