At 89-years old, Lillian Fenster says she feels right at home at Sykes’ Apartment Complex.
“It’s really light, and you can see out, and it’s clean,” said Fenster.
She’s the first to move in to one of the luxury units, which are the final building blocks in an overhaul of a business over a hundred years old. She’s got the works, including custom cabinets, a flat-top stove and sleek counter tops.
“You just take a look and you know they did a good job,” said Fenster.
Sykes’ has long been a landmark in Kalispell, but back in 2009, it looked like it was going to shut down forever. However, a businessman named Ray Thompson bought the place. Now, it’s hopping once again, and right above the action and nostalgia, is some high-tech living.
“It wraps us up for what we took on here,” said Project Manager Dave Jolly. “The entire complex, when Ray bought it, we had a pretty full plate.”
Jolly knows the ins and the outs of the new apartments, which include energy efficient LED lights that brighten up the place, and a complex security system that helps keep people like Fenster safe. Fenster is the only one who has moved in so far, and she and Dave are no strangers.
“I think I was scolded a couple times for not having it built it quick enough but she’s here now and she seems to be pleased,” joked Jolly.
Sykes’ original owners in the early 1900s likely never imagined all the upgrades that would eventually happen. But some things are still the same. Folks like Fenster can still get a 10-cent cup of coffee downstairs.