Monte Cristo Hotel
Monte Cristo Hotel
|Location||1507 Wall St., Everett, Washington|
|Area||less than 1 acre (0.40 ha)|
|Built by||Alexander & MacNeil|
|Consulting architect||Abraham H. Albertson|
|Architectural style||Second Renaissance Revival|
|NRHP reference No.||76001907|
|Added to NRHP||June 3, 1976|
The Monte Cristo Hotel is a historic building located in Everett, Washington. It is a major feature of the city's downtown core. It ceased functioning as a hotel in 1972. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 3, 1976. In 1994 it was restored and redeveloped into low income housing.
The six story brick building was largest hotel project in Everett. It was built on the site of the original Monte Cristo Hotel, which opened in 1892 and had hosted the Providence Hospital from 1905 to 1924. Construction was a community project with hundreds of stockholders. Designed by Seattle architect Henry Bittman the hotel opened on May 29, 1925. The 120-foot (37 m) facade fronts on Wall Street looking south. The height of the building and its elevated position on the slope of downtown make it visible from some distance approaching the city from the south. This landmark was the town's important hotel and social center for over 40 years. The hotel closed in 1972.
In 1991 after the building had been vacant about 20 years a group of investors spent about US$100,000 (equivalent to $198,949 in 2021) working on a redevelopment plan that fell through. Plans were announced in 1993 to renovate the building as low cost housing. At that time Mayor Pete Kinch described the Monte Cristo Hotel as a "bellwether of how we as a community are dealing with" the problem of downtown decline.
Redevelopment and restoration
In August 1993 private developer Lojis Corp. had assembled a financing package for the redevelopment into low income housing. The package was contingent on leasing some of the building's space. A plan for the city to lease the space for an arts venue led to a lengthy city council debate. On August 25, 1993 the Everett City Council approved spending US$81,590 (equivalent to $153,049 in 2021) per year to lease 8,867 square feet (823.8 m2) of space in the building, including the grand lobby, mezzanine and ballroom areas. By November of that year the building had been re–roofed, new sidewalks poured, new interior stairs built and exterior restoration started as part of a $6.8 million construction project. The Washington Community Renewal Association invested $3M and Lojis Corp. secured $3.8M in equity by selling $6.7M in federal historic and low income housing tax credits.
At a three-day grand reopening on June 10–12, 1994 Mayor Ed Hansen lauded Lojis president David Mandley for persevering in getting the project organized and skill in the historical restoration of the buildings exterior and common spaces. The guest rooms had been converted to 69 residential units which as a condition of using the tax credits must be rented to tenants with an income 60% or less of the area's median. Historic renovation and preservation were mandated by the use of the historic tax credits. Reporter Diane Brooks wrote in The Seattle Times, "Once a symbol of downtown decay, the hotel now symbolizes Everett's development boom". Popular downtown restaurant Passport moved into the Monte Cristo in 1994.
In 1997 the building was again serving as a civic center when a public forum for candidates for judge on the county superior court was held there. The building was home to the Everett Center for the Arts and the Arts Council of Snohomish County which displayed art in the grand lobby and mezzanine including shows and exhibitions. The Monte Cristo Ballroom was named Best Wedding Venue in a 2019 readers poll in The Herald Business Journal. All inclusive wedding packages were offered. The business closed abruptly on October 15, 2019. The Monte Cristo Awards, inspired by the building's quality, recognize neighbors who take pride in their property.
- "National Register Information System – Monte Cristo Hotel (#76001907)". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
- Potter, Elisabeth Walton (June 3, 1976). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory/Nomination: Monte Cristo Hotel". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. Retrieved February 27, 2020. With 2 photos from 1975.
- Cameron, David A.; LeWarne, Charles P.; May, M. Allan; O'Donnell, Jack C.; O'Donnell, Lawrence E. (2005). Snohomish County: An Illustrated History. Index, Washington: Kelcema Books LLC. pp. 111, 202. ISBN 978-0-9766700-0-1. OCLC 62728798.
- Glover, Darrell (January 2, 1993). "Everett picking up steam – a renaissance is under way as city celebrates centennial". Seattle Post–Intelligencer. p. B1.
- Shaw, Linda (August 29, 1991). "Developers abandon plan for Everett hotel". The Seattle Times. p. F1.
- Brooks, Diane (August 19, 1993). "Council delays vote on lease that could save beloved hotel". The Seattle Times. p. B2.
- Brooks, Diane (August 26, 1993). "Everett council OKs plan to fix up historic hotel". The Seattle Times. p. B1.
- Brooks, Diane (November 22, 1993). "Grandeur returning to the Monte Cristo – Work progressing at historic Everett hotel". The Seattle Times. p. B1.
- Brooks, Diane (June 10, 1994). "From 'eyesore' to elegance – pigeons out, stained glass in for Monte Cristo reopening". The Seattle Times. p. B1.
- Hinterberger, John (November 13, 1994). "Hungry for change? – What's new? – Not much. And everything. (Part 2 of 2)". The Seattle Times. p. 12.
- "Forum set for candidates for bench". The Seattle Times. May 5, 1997. p. B2.
- Anderson, Hilda (February 19, 1998). "Often–overlooked Everett is a worthy adventure". Seattle Post–Intelligencer. p. 3.
- Davey, Stephanie (October 17, 2019). "Emergency wedding plans ensue after Monte Cristo closure". The Herald Business Journal.
- Bruestle, Sara (December 30, 2018). "It happened here: A look back at The Herald's features of 2018 - Twelve stories — one for each month — about the people, places and things that made for a memorable year". The Daily Herald. History of a hotel: Everett's dreams gave rise to Monte Cristo.