by Ralph Nichols Almost two years after ground breaking for the $45 million Artemis Hotel in Des Moines, pre-construction work is set to begin Monday (May 20) with demolition of existing buildings at the construction site. The eight-floor, 238-room luxury hotel will include Des Moines’ first convention center, a banquet room that can accommodate 300 guests, and two full-service restaurants – a fine dining room serving authentic Chinese cuisine and an American grill. “We’re excited that the Artemis Hotel project is ready to start and the city looks forward to working with the Artemis and Mr. Yang and his staff in the coming months as this project progresses,” Des Moines City Manager Tony Piasecki told The Waterland Blog. Yang Chun is majority owner of the hotel project, and Yareton Investment & Management, LLC, of Washington state is the developer. Puyallup-based Absher is general contractor. Belay Architecture of Tacoma designed the hotel. Located at 22406 Pacific Highway S., the Artemis Hotel will be located three miles south of Seattle-Tacoma International and close to the Interstate 5-Kent/Des Moines Road interchange. The Artemis Hotel project had its beginning in 2009 when Des Moines Councilman – and then Mayor – Bob Sheckler met with Mr. Yang at his invitation in China. “We talked about building a hotel in the Unites States that would feature Chinese culture and Chinese cuisine,” Mr. Yang said at the groundbreaking in mid-2011. “This is a win/win situation for the city and the investors.” “The Artemis Hotel, when it opens in about two years, will be a crown jewel on Pacific Highway South,” Sheckler told the blog. “While there were a few naysayers who said it will never happen, a majority of Des Moines residents supported this project. Now it’s happening, and it will attract other new businesses up and down the highway. “I couldn’t be more pleased and more excited.” According to the Yareton Investment & Management website, the Artemis Hotel, designed with a 1930’s art deco flair, will include nine deluxe penthouse suites with panoramic views of the Puget Sound and Mt. Rainier and the Cascade Mountains. It will feature a casino-style poker room operated by a well-known gaming operator and have popular table games including Black Jack, poker and high-limit Baccarat.]]>