32 E. EXCHANGE PLACE
In 1909, the Commercial Club opened as a social club for men in downtown Salt Lake City. Mining Magnate, Samuel Newhouse, donated the land for the building, as well as the Salt Lake Stock Exchange building that continues to stand across from the Commercial Club building. Walter E. Ware and Alberto O. Treganza were commissioned with the architecture and turned the building into a piece of art, complete with poly-chromed terra cotta, fluted columns, ornamental faces, a bracketed copper cornice, and a western motif.
The Commercial Club was to be the Wall Street of Utah. The Chamber of Commerce operated in the building and global dignitaries dined in the grand ballroom. Over time, the club became a financial drain and the Chamber of Commerce was moved in 1938. Since that time, the building has seen many businesses come and go, including a marketing firm and dance club.
In its first iteration as a social club, the Commercial Club was exclusively for men. Women were relegated to the "ladies' parlor" and taking the elevator at the side of the building. In many ways, the Commercial Club was a product of its time and culture. Men ran businesses and were active in the social scene. Women were not.
Today, many of the factors that impeded women in business during the days of the Commercial Club remain in Utah. Women receive less business loans, are faced with lower wages than anywhere else in the nation, and have childcare needs.
The Wave seeks to address the unique needs of women in Utah, while retaining the history of working spaces in the city. During construction, The Wave restored and recreated many of the features that the Commercial Club became known for, including the iconic chandeliers.
Join us and become part of ever-expanding Utah history.