Our Unique History
In 1916, a local cattleman named Bird Rose (who also happened to be an avid sports fan) announced, “It is disgraceful not to have a decent hotel for home (University of Oregon) games.” At that time, there were only three hotels, all on Willamette Street, but none large enough to host banquets and athletic activities.
Plans for “Our Hotel” Began
Mr. Rose proved to be an excellent salesman, building enthusiasm in the community (populated then by only populated by 15,000 people) to construct a new hotel. He convinced ten local businessmen to advance $10,000 each to buy land and to engage an architect to draw up a set of plans for “Our Hotel.” Bird Rose presided over the project as president and a stock issue was offered in January of 1924. Some say it sold out within the first week.
Construction began on March 1, 1924, with no expense being spared. It was important to the community that the building be fireproof with walls of sufficient thickness to help with heating and noise.
A Handsome Grand Opening
The Eugene Hotel opened its doors with dinner, dancing and much fanfare on June 15, 1925. Many prominent people in business and hotel circles throughout the state attended the Grand Opening. The Americanized-Spanish architectural style, with cream-colored stucco finish, caused it to be recognized as one of the most handsome hotels in the Northwest.
Tradition of Grace Lives On
The Eugene Hotel was a premier facility for local events and an inviting and elegant stopover for guests traveling the then new Pacific Highway 99. For nearly 60 years, The Eugene Hotel catered to visitors and locals alike, contributing to the lives and memories of politicians, entertainers, business people, University of Oregon students and tourists. Today the tradition of service, wonderful staff and ambiance live on. In 1983, The Eugene Hotel was converted to apartments for independent, active adults 58 and over. Its style still shines through and remains on the National Registry for Historic Places.