Following that last melancholy post about the potential closing of a landmark, here’s the exact opposite to help perk you back up.
After years of work and $20 million spent, there was a “soft opening” of the newly restored Park Inn Hotel in Mason City, Iowa, the last hotel Frank Lloyd Wright designed. Originally opened in 1910, within just 20 years the building had fallen from grace, “drastically” altered into commercial space by 1926 following financial troubles in the early 1920s.
By the ’70s, it had been converted into apartments and then was completely abandoned. In 2005, a non-profit was formed to bring it back to life, with renovation construction beginning in the winter of last year. The official launch isn’t until next month, with a full grand opening week in Mason City starting on Sept. 5, but this weekend marked its first trial run with overnight guests, all of whom were members of the Board of Directors of the non-profit, which helped bring the hotel back to life.