Downtown Phoenix '50s motel being transformed into a high-tech smart hotel with a 'Miami-style' pool area

A downtown Phoenix motel from the '50s, described as old and run down, is turning into a new technologically advanced destination.

The motel, located near Sixth Avenue and Van Buren Street, was originally a Travelodge built in 1959 and is recognized as a historic property. A new, cutting-edge hotel group has come up with a design that preserves the historic building and transforms it into the city's first fully-automated smart hotel.

Plans are in the works to turn the 63-year-old motel into an edgy, high-tech completely automated hotel with 114 rooms and a rooftop pool.

"It's going to be phenomenal. It’s going to be Miami-style cabanas, live entertainment, something Phoenix has never seen," said Ken Patel, EV Hotels founder and chairman.

EV Hotel has worked with the city of Phoenix on a plan that updates the old into the new and keeps the iconic look.

"We have to show them a design they were comfortable with, that we still kept the old Travelodge and we integrated it into our building," Patel said.

The hotel won’t have a front desk or room key cards. From check-in to room service, guests will use an app for nearly everything an employee typically does and to customize their rooms.

"It's like an airline," Patel said. "You’ll get a message, you’re ready to check in. You’re putting your preferences. I want the room to be at 70 degrees, lights on. These things are what’s going to create the experience."

Each room will have more than a dozen smart devices, including a smart mirror, engineered for guests to adjust their surroundings with the tip of their finger.

"Now you’re owning your own room because you’re customizing your room to what you want," he explained.

There’s no timeline yet for when the renovation and construction will begin on turning this old motel into a high-tech smart hotel. They're still in the process of rezoning and securing a permit.

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A motel that is expected to be renovated into a smart, hi-tech hotel in downtown Phoenix