Alcazar Hotel - St. Augustine, Florida, USA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Marine Biologist
N 29° 53.499 W 081° 18.842
17R E 469679 N 3306820
Quick Description: The Alcazar Hotel, designed by John M. Carrere and Thomas Hastings, now houses St. Augustine City Hall and the Lightner Museum. Architect Thomas Hastings was awarded the Royal Gold Medal in 1922.
Location: Florida, United States
Date Posted: 4/30/2011 4:27:02 AM
Waymark Code: WMBBCX
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member razalas
Views: 8

Long Description:
The Alcazar Hotel, commissioned by Henry M. Flagler to appeal to wealthy tourists who traveled there on his railroad, was built in 1887 in the Spanish Renaissance style. It was designed by architects Carrère and Hastings, who also designed the Ponce de León Hotel across the street (now part of Flagler College). Both buildings are notable as being among the earliest examples of poured concrete buildings in the world. These architects later designed the New York Public Library and the U.S. Senate office building.

The hotel boasted a steam room, massage parlor, gymnasium, and sulfur baths, as well as the world's largest indoor swimming pool. However, after years as an elegant winter resort for wealthy patrons, the hotel closed in 1932. In 1946, Chicago publisher Otto C. Lightner purchased the building to house his extensive collection of Victoriana. He opened the Lightner Museum two years later, and later donated it to the city of St. Augustine.

The building is an attraction in itself, centering on an open palm courtyard with an arched stone bridge spanning a fishpond. The Museum is housed in the former health facilities of the hotel, i.e, the spa and Turkish bath, as well as its three-storey ballroom.

-- Source

Architect: Thomas Hastings

Prize received: RIBA Royal Gold Medal

In what year: 1922

Website about the Architect: [Web Link]

Website about the building: [Web Link]

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