The oldest hotel in every state
The US is filled with glamorous, modern hotels, but there is something special about staying in a history-filled establishment that helps tell the story of a destination’s local culture.
From colonial bed and breakfasts in New England to stagecoach stops from the Old West, there are plenty of places to spend the night that history buffs will love.
With the help of Historic Hotels of America, a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Insider compiled a list of the oldest (or nearly the oldest) hotel in every state.
ALABAMA: The Battle House Hotel, Mobile
While it opened to guests in 1852, the Battle House Hotel in Mobile, Alabama, was built on the same spot as a military headquarters that Andrew Jackson set up during the War of 1812.
After a devastating fire in 1905 and falling into disrepair several times over the years, the Battle House Hotel re-opened for good in 2009.
ALASKA: Alaskan Hotel & Bar, Juneau
The Alaskan Hotel is the oldest operating hotel in Alaska and opened on Tuesday, September 16, 1913. The town of Juneau was mostly a mining town at the time, with most boarding establishments catering to the workers there.
The hotel marks a turning point in the state’s history, built a year after the state became a US territory.
ARIZONA: Grand Canyon Hotel, Williams
Opened in 1891, the Grand Canyon Hotel is the oldest hotel in Arizona. The hotel features 23 rooms and six suites, all decorated in unique styles.
ARKANSAS: The Capital Hotel, Little Rock
This grand hotel first opened in 1870 and has been an important landmark in Arkansas’ capital ever since.
One of the hotel’s most remarkable features is its giant elevator, which is said to have been built so that President Ulysses S. Grant and his horse could fit inside.
CALIFORNIA: Murphys Historic Hotel, Murphys
The Murphys Hotel was opened in the summer of 1856, as the Sperry & Perry Hotel. In its heyday, it was a popular stopover for people looking to see the Calaveras Big Trees, a recently discovered grove of giant sequoias that attracted tourists from all over.
According to the hotel, notable guests include Mark Twain and former President Ulysses S. Grant.
COLORADO: The Cliff House at Pikes Peak, Manitou Springs
The Cliff House at Pikes Peak was a popular stop for stagecoaches traveling across the state in the 1870s.
Later on, the hotel became a luxurious vacation spot for important figures such as President Theodore Roosevelt, P.T. Barnum, and Thomas Edison. The hotel is still a popular destination for Colorado vacationers today.
CONNECTICUT: 1754 House Inn & Restaurant, Woodbury
New England is known for its quaint bed and breakfasts, and the Curtis House Restaurant & Inn in Woodbury, Connecticut, is no exception.
The hotel, which dates back to 1736, was given a makeover in 2014 on Fox’s “Hotel Hell” with Gordon Ramsay and has been renamed the 1754 House Inn & Restaurant.
Despite its recent update, the inn is still dedicated to maintaining its antique charm.
DELAWARE: The Inn at Montchanin Village, Montchanin
The Inn at Montchanin Village is situated in a 19th-century hamlet that has been beautifully restored. Twenty-eight rooms are spread across 11 buildings dating back from 1799 to 1910.
Whether you wander around the estate or dine at Krazy Kat’s restaurant, which used to be the town’s blacksmith, you’ll feel transported back in time.
FLORIDA: The Florida House Inn, Fernandina Beach
The Florida House Inn, which opened in 1857, is located in one of the state’s most historic areas — Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island.
The shipping, shrimping, and tourism industries were booming after the Civil War, making the Florida House Inn the perfect destination to those visiting the area for work or people looking to take a vacation (during the war, it housed soldiers).
The inn remains today as a tribute to “Old Florida.”
GEORGIA: River Street Inn, Savannah
Savannah’s historic district acts as a stunning look into the past when it comes to Southern architecture.
The building where the inn now stands was originally used to store cotton, the city’s main export, in the 19th century, and was built in 1817.
Visitors to the inn will still get a warehouse feel when they visit today.
HAWAII: Moana Surfrider, a Westin Resort & Spa, Honolulu
This hotel may share a name with one of Disney’s latest animated films, but the history of the Moana Surfrider dates back much further.
The resort is located right on Waikiki Beach, and it has been a popular vacation destination since it opened in 1901.
IDAHO: The Idaho Hotel, Silver City
Silver City, Idaho, is a historic mining town that feels as though it has been frozen in time. The Idaho Hotel only adds to the town’s historic charm.
The hotel opened in 1863 in nearby Ruby City, although it eventually expanded and moved locations to Silver City.
ILLINOIS: The DeSoto House Hotel, Galena
The architecture and design of the DeSoto House Hotel feel just as glamorous as they did in the 1850s.
Guests are encouraged to take a self-guided walking tour of the property, and the hotel also offers a video detailing the hotel’s history. With stunning Victorian-inspired interiors, it’s no surprise that the hotel is a popular wedding venue.
INDIANA: Historic Broadway Hotel & Tavern, Madison
Located in downtown Madison, Indiana, the Broadway Hotel & Tavern is a popular restaurant and bar that’s been in business since 1834.
IOWA: Hotel Julien, Dubuque
Hotel Julien is located in the Old Main district of Dubuque, Iowa. The luxurious vintage-style hotel may not have always been called “Hotel Julien,” but some sort of hotel has occupied the site since 1839.
Despite many changes over the years, the current Hotel Julien has been under the same ownership since 1962.
KANSAS: Midland Railroad Hotel, Wilson
Today’s Midland Railroad Hotel first opened in 1899 as the Power Hotel. In its early days, the hotel was a popular stop for travelers on the Union Pacific railroad going between Kansas City and Denver.
After a fire nearly destroyed the hotel in 1902, it was restored and reopened as the Midland Railroad Hotel. The hotel’s latest renovation took place in 2003, which restored the establishment with 1920s style in mind.
KENTUCKY: The Old Talbott Tavern, Bardstown
The Talbott Tavern in Bardstown, Kentucky, looks like a quaint old house, but it is actually a charming inn.
The tavern is one of the older hotels on the list, having offered food and shelter to travelers since the late 1700s (it was built in 1779). It was particularly popular among people traveling west by stagecoach. Even pioneer and explorer Daniel Boone stopped at the tavern during his travels.
LOUISIANA: Omni Royal Orleans, New Orleans
New Orleans’ French Quarter is famous for its rich history, culture, and beautiful architecture and design. The Omni Royal Orleans has been a landmark in the neighborhood since it opened in 1843.
MAINE: Seaside Inn and Cottages, Kennebunk
The Seaside Inn has been run by the same family for nine generations. The inn you can visit today first opened in 1756, although there has been some sort of inn on the site since 1660, according to the family that runs it.
The earlier inn used to often house ferrymen who took passengers across the Kennebunk River, but today it’s a relaxing family vacation destination.
MARYLAND: Historic Inns of Annapolis, Annapolis
The Historic Inns of Annapolis are made up of three properties: The Maryland Inn, Governor Calvert House, and Robert Johnson House.
All three houses have years of history and stories, although the Governor Calvert House is the oldest, dating back to 1695.
MASSACHUSETTS: Concord’s Colonial Inn, Concord
Concord’s Colonial Inn has seen its fair share of history. The oldest building on the property was built in 1716. During the Revolutionary War, the inn was used to store arms and provisions. Later, in the 1830s, Henry David Thoreau lived in the inn while he attended Harvard.
From 1889 on, Concord’s Colonial Inn has operated similarly to how it does today. Plus, its location also has plenty to offer when it comes to history. The inn is located near Minute Man National Historical Park and Walden Pond State Reservation.
MICHIGAN: The National House Inn, Marshall
The National House Inn bed and breakfast is the oldest operating hotel in Michigan. Built in 1835 by Colonel Andrew Mann, the inn is believed to have served as a stop on the Underground Railroad.
With the arrival of the Michigan Central Railroad in 1844, the hotel soon transformed into a travel stop for railroad riders.
MINNESOTA: Historic Anderson House Hotel, Wabasha
The Historic Anderson House Hotel opened in 1856, and a great deal of the furniture found in the hotel still dates back to its founding.
Perhaps the most interesting part of staying at the Historic Anderson House Hotel is that guests could borrow one of the hotel’s cats to spend the night in their room as a companion.
The hotel closed in 2009, but reopened under new ownership in 2011 under the name Eagles on the River & Anderson House Hotel.
MISSISSIPPI: Dunleith Historic Inn, Natchez
The Dunleith Historic Inn is a grand estate that once belonged to a single-family. While the main building dates back to 1856, the property features a carriage house, dairy barn, poultry house, and greenhouse from the 1790s. It is listed as a National Historic Landmark.
MISSOURI: The Elms Hotel and Spa, Excelsior Springs
People initially flocked to the area where The Elms stands today in the 19th century for the reported healing powers of mineral waters in the area.
Land developers took the opportunity to build a community on the newly popular site and settled the town of Excelsior Springs. The Elms Hotel was not far behind, first opening in 1888. The hotel burned down and was rebuilt twice before the limestone structure still operating today opened in 1912.
The Elms went through a $20 million renovation in 2011, restoring it to its historic glory as well as updating its luxurious spa.
MONTANA: Grand Union Hotel, Fort Benton
Visitors of the Grand Union Hotel in Fort Benton, Montana, often visit the area to follow the Lewis and Clark Trail and enjoy the beauty of the Missouri River.
Both the town and the hotel were particularly prosperous during the steamboat era, given its proximity to the Upper Missouri River.
After several changes in ownership and many restorations, the Grand Union Hotel opened as it is today in 1999, fittingly on the 117th anniversary of its original opening.
NEBRASKA: Historic Argo Hotel, Crofton
Like many historic hotels in the Midwest, the Argo Hotel opened because of new railroads in the area.
The hotel opened in 1912, when trains from Chicago and Minneapolis/St. Paul began traveling to and from Crofton, Nebraska. The increased business in the area called for sufficient lodging to be built, and so the Argo Hotel was born.
NEVADA: Gold Hill Hotel, Virginia City
The Gold Hill Hotel dates back to approximately 1861, and over the years it has operated as a rooming house, private residence, bar, and a brothel, according to its website.
Today, the property has both an inn and a restaurant. Customers who are especially interested in history can choose to stay in “original historic rooms,” in the oldest building of the hotel, which has “uneven floors and walls, original plaster and exposed brick, and double brass beds.”
NEW HAMPSHIRE: Hanover Inn, Dartmouth
The site where the Hanover Inn is today was once home to a Dartmouth College administrator, General Ebenezer Brewster, in the late 1700s. Brewster turned his home into a tavern in 1780, and the transition into today’s Hanover Inn began.
Just like nearby Dartmouth College, the Hanover Inn has a classic design and is rooted in tradition. The surrounding area is just as beautiful as the stately brick hotel, since the Appalachian Trail is nearby.
NEW JERSEY: Congress Hall Hotel, Cape May
The Congress Hall Hotel, which opened in 1816, is the oldest seaside resort in the country, according to its website.
Located on the southern-most tip of the New Jersey shoreline, the resort offers a beautiful beachfront property as well as a sprawling farm just two miles away.
NEW MEXICO: Hilton Santa Fe Historic Plaza, Santa Fe
There’s no better place to stay in New Mexico than a history filled hacienda.
The property is now owned by Hilton and has been comfortably modernized, although the original buildings date back to 1625.
NEW YORK: The Beekman Arms and Delamater Inn, Rhinebeck
Just over 100 miles from New York City, The Beekman Arms and Delamater Inn is an idyllic hideaway in the Hudson Valley.
The hotel, which first opened in 1766, has provided lodging for many famous guests over the years, including Presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Benjamin Harrison.
NORTH CAROLINA: The Mast Farm Inn, Banner Elk
The Mast Farm Inn started welcoming guests around 1900, although the property dates back to 1792, when Joseph Mast walked from Pennsylvania to North Carolina to settle a new home. Mast’s original cabin is still on the property today.
President Woodrow Wilson’s daughter got married at the inn in 1913, and the property remains a popular destination for weddings today.
NORTH DAKOTA: Carroll House Hotel, Fullerton
When the Carroll House Hotel opened in 1889, it instantly became an integral part of the town’s culture. Church and town meetings and even concerts and galas were held at the hotel over the years.
Today, guests can stay in one of seven guest rooms, or rent out the entire house for vacations and events.
OHIO: The Golden Lamb Restaurant and Hotel, Lebanon
The Golden Lamb Restaurant & Hotel opened in 1803 as a “house of Public Entertainment,” and it still provides food and lodging to this day. The hotel’s founder named the property after a sign of a golden-colored lamb that hung outside the building.
The Golden Lamb holds the record for Ohio’s longest family-run business since it has been owned by the same family since 1926.
OKLAHOMA: The Skirvin Hilton, Oklahoma City
The Skirvin Hilton calls itself “Oklahoma’s historically modern hotel,” and that name rings true. The unique architecture is striking, especially considering that the hotel dates back to 1911.
The hotel reportedly offered a private room where guests could drink alcohol during Prohibition, according to Historic Hotels of America.
OREGON: Wolf Creek Inn and Tavern, Wolf Creek
Wolf Creek Inn and Tavern is located on an Oregon state Heritage Site of the same name. The inn and restaurant have been open since 1883, when most guests were traveling by stagecoach.
PENNSYLVANIA: The Gettysburg Hotel, Gettysburg
The Gettysburg, which was established in 1797, has played an important role in American history for over 200 years. The hotel was near the center of the action during the Civil War, specifically for the Battle of Gettysburg and President Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.
In more recent history, President Dwight D. Eisenhower set up a temporary command center at the hotel while recovering from a heart attack in 1955.
RHODE ISLAND: Graduate Providence, Providence
The Graduate Providence, formerly the Providence Biltmore Hotel, opened in 1922, and it has been a popular destination for tourists for decades.
The beautiful brick building was designed by the same architects who built New York City’s Grand Central Station.
Now, the Graduate Providence’s rooms have been updated with a more modern flare.
SOUTH CAROLINA: John Rutledge House Inn, Charleston
Designated as a National Historic Landmark, the John Rutledge House, built in 1763, is the only home of a signer of the Constitution of the United States that visitors can spend the night in, and only one of 15 homes of signers still standing.
Today, guests can stay in either the main house or two carriage houses that are part of the John Rutledge House Inn in the historic city of Charleston, South Carolina.
SOUTH DAKOTA: Historic Bullock Hotel, Deadwood
The historic Bullock Hotel was built by Deadwood sheriff Seth Bullock around 1895, who is still said to roam the property today.
TENNESSEE: The Peabody, Memphis
Since it opened in 1869, the Peabody has been an institution in the city of Memphis.
The hotel is perhaps best known for its daily ritual of The March of the Peabody Ducks, which takes place on the rooftop in the Royal Duck Palace. As the title suggests, the tradition involves ducks marching down a red carpet in an elegant ceremony.
TEXAS: Haunted Magnolia Hotel, Seguin
This hotel was simply named the Magnolia Hotel before it became known as the Haunted Magnolia Hotel, as it is today.
The hotel first opened in 1844 and went through many owners and restorations over the years. Today, the hotel owners say that 13 paranormal spirits have been identified on the site, making it a hot spot for ghost hunters.
UTAH: Moore’s Old Pine Inn, Marysvale
This hotel was originally named the Pines Hotel when it opened in 1882, and owners have found copies of the New York Times from that year glued to rafters of the house.
The current owners renovated and reopened the hotel in 1995, dedicating themselves to preserving the property’s history. In fact, even the tall trees on the front lawn can be seen as saplings in photos from the hotel in the early 20th century.
VERMONT: The Woodstock Inn & Resort, Woodstock
While the hotel has certainly modernized, it has not lost its historic New England charm, which dates back to its opening in 1793. From there, the inn quickly grew in popularity, especially after a train station opened in the town of Woodstock, helping it become the popular vacation getaway that it is today.
VIRGINIA: The Williamsburg Lodge and Colonial Houses, Williamsburg
History buffs flock to Colonial Williamsburg in Williamsburg, Virginia, for its authentic recreation of life in the early days of the US.
The Colonial Houses date back to 1749, and give guests have the opportunity to stay in the same rooms where Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson have spent the night.
WASHINGTON: Tokeland Hotel, Tokeland
Located on the Willapa Bay, the Tokeland Hotel is a cozy spot perfect for a relaxing weekend getaway.
The house was built in 1885, and the owners opened the Kindred Inn in 1889. As the small town became more accessible for travelers, the inn, eventually renamed the Tokeland Hotel, became a popular beach resort.
WEST VIRGINIA: The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs
The Greenbrier is a luxurious resort in West Virginia’s beautiful Allegheny Mountains. Guests first came to the resort in 1778 for the nearby mineral waters in White Sulphur Springs. By the 1850s, the Greenbrier was a popular vacation destination for government and military officials.
Over the Greenbrier’s lengthy history, the resort has hosted a whopping 26 US presidents.
WISCONSIN: Historic Hotels of Lake Geneva, Lake Geneva
The Historic Hotels of Lake Geneva are comprised of Baker House and Maxwell Mansion, which were built in 1855 and 1856, respectively.
Guests often feel as if they’ve been transported back in time when staying on the two properties, which are impeccably preserved and decorated. Since the inns are in close proximity to both Milwaukee and Chicago, they’ve long been a popular destination among the cities’ political and social elite.
WYOMING: The Historic Occidental Hotel, Buffalo
Step inside the Historic Occidental Hotel, which was built in 1880, and you’ll be able to imagine yourself in the Old West. Famous figures from the era, like Butch Cassidy, Calamity Jane, and Buffalo Bill were all known to frequent the hotel, and even President Theodore Roosevelt has been a guest.
The original building is no longer there and has been replaced. However, today, each room is uniquely decorated, so guests are able to choose which western-inspired room best suits their interests.
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