Archi-Love | Historic Hotels

First of all, happy Halloween! I hope you all enjoyed lots of spooky parties last weekend and are ready to pass out lots of horrible-for-your-health candies. Unfortunately, neither My Main Man or I will be passing out goodies to cute ballerinas and scary reapers. He has to work and I will be in class until 9 (or staying home sick, as my unhappy body's forecast is currently reading) in my Historic Preservation class.

I love the stories historic buildings tell, and how they shape communities and attitudes of people. I was roaming the NTHP website and found this awesome link where you can browse historic hotels around the world, including beauties like these:

Intercontinental Mark Hopkins Hotel, San Francisco, CA

Omni Mount Washington Resort, Bretton Woods, NH

Wentworth Mansion, Charleston, SC

I can't believe treasures like this are lurking all over the United States. I want to plan a humongous road trip just seeing all of these. (Perhaps I should start planning all of our anniversary excursions now so we can hit up one hotel each year?)

Even though I mentioned a couple haunted hotels last week, I don't think all historic hotels (or buildings in general) are creepy. Besides being an environmentally sustainable alternative to new construction, historic preservation maintains character and tells stories you simply can't get from a book. Exploring a historic building is like being a detective. As each layer is peeled away, a story is told of a family growing, or adding a business to their home, or repairing damage from fire or flood. The materials and spaces echo different eras, creating a symphony unlike any other. 

A historic home in Tredyffrin Township, PA

I realize how awkwardly poetic I sound, but I bet if you dug around a bit you'd feel the same way. If you live in Salt Lake City, explore North Temple, the Avenues, or the Harvard/Yale area, paying special attention the to unique designs, materials, and even position on each lot of the houses you see. These buildings have been around for up to 100 years in some cases (closer to 50 in the Harvard/Yale area) and, if maintained well, will still be functioning for many decades to come (if your home was built within the last 20 years, good luck getting half of that lifespan out of your home). Many historic buildings are treasures that really deserve our attention as we look to buy a new home, move our business to a better location, or open up a luxury hotel. How can we not preserve them?

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