Battery Park Hotel

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Battery Park Hotel
Battery Park Hotel.JPG
The second Battery Park Hotel
Battery Park Hotel is located in North Carolina
Battery Park Hotel
Location Battle Sq., Asheville, North Carolina
Coordinates 35°35′49″N 82°32′19″W / 35.59694°N 82.53861°W / 35.59694; -82.53861Coordinates: 35°35′49″N 82°32′19″W / 35.59694°N 82.53861°W / 35.59694; -82.53861
Built 1924
Architect Stoddart,W.L.
Architectural style Classical Revival
Governing body Private
NRHP Reference #

77000990

[1]
Added to NRHP July 14, 1977

The Battery Park Hotel is the name given to two hotels in Asheville, North Carolina. The one standing today is 14 stories tall and was built in 1924 by Edwin W. Grove, during a time of increased tourism in the North Carolina mountains. It replaced a Queen Anne style hotel[2] which stood 125 feet tall. The name came from the fact that Confederate forces used the site for batteries of artillery.[3]

History[edit]

The original Battery Park Hotel was built in 1886 by Colonel Frank Coxe. It was designed by Philadelphia architect Edward Hazlehurst (1853-1915) in "spectacular" Queen Anne style.[4] It was the first hotel in the South with an electric elevator, and one of the first with electric lighting.

Once the railroad reached Asheville in 1880, the mountain town attracted 20 passenger trains a day from the nation's largest cities, and people found out what a wonderful place the community was to visit. One reason for visiting Asheville was the clean mountain air, which helped problems such as tuberculosis. Fine hotels were built, and Coxe's Battery Park Hotel was the best of these. For one thing, its location on Asheville's tallest hill provided magnificent views.

The Rockefeller and Lorillard families were among those who stayed in the Battery Park. Another notable guest was George Vanderbilt, who from his window could see the land that would one day become Biltmore Estate.[5]

People hated to see the old Battery Park Hotel torn down, but Edwin W. Grove, known also for the Grove Park Inn, built a fine hotel in the same location.

Architect William Lee Stoddart of New York City designed the 220-room Battery Park Hotel that stands today. The modern building was built of reinforced concrete with brick, limestone, and terra cotta, with a Mission Revival roof that offered a dining area. The architectural style was a mix of Neoclassical and "Spanish romanticism".

On September 4, 1943 a U.S. Government Official, Clifton Alheit, jumped to his death off the roof of the Battery Park Hotel in an apparent suicide.

The hotel closed in 1972 and the Asheville Housing Authority took it over in the 1980s, coverting it into apartments for senior citizens. Today, businesses operate on the first floor.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13. 
  2. ^ a b http://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/asheville/bat.htm, Retrieved on 2009/01/25.
  3. ^ http://toto.lib.unca.edu/findingaids/books/booklets/battery_park_hotel/default_battery_park.htm, Retrieved on 2009/01/25.
  4. ^ Catherine W. Bishir (2009). "North Carolina Architects & Builders: Hazlehurst, Edward (1853-1915)". North Carolina State University Libraries.  (includes historic postcard photo)
  5. ^ Terrell, Bob (2009-01-25). "Coxe's Posh Hotel Paved the Way for Vanderbilt to Transform Asheville". Asheville Citizen-Times. Retrieved 2009-01-25. [dead link]