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Jack Tar Hotels

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jack Tar Hotels was a hotel chain in the United States.


The chain began with a single motel in Galveston, Texas, overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, built in 1940 by W. L. Moody III, the chairman of Affiliated National Hotels. The “Jack Tar” name (a slang term for a sailor) was chosen as the result of a naming contest. In 1949, the facility was renovated by architect Thomas M. Price, who established an office in Galveston after World War II. Price graduated from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, studying under Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer. This property was purchased in 1952 by Dallas insurance executive Charles Sammons, who acquired the rights to the Jack Tar name and launched an expansion project, opening several properties nationwide.[1] These properties were known for their modernist curtain wall architecture with most designed by Price.

In 1997, the Jack Tar properties were sold to Allegro.[2][3][4] The sale included ownership of a resort and casino in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic, and assume two leases for resorts in Montego Bay, Jamaica, and Cancun, Mexico. Allegro also acquired management contracts for two resorts in Guanacaste Province, Costa Rica, and a marketing and franchise agreement for a St. Kitts resort."[5][6]

San Francisco, California

A 400-room Jack Tar Hotel in San Francisco occupied a full city block at the intersection of Geary Boulevard and Van Ness Avenue. When built in 1960, it was considered one of the most luxurious hotels in the city, although it was criticized by Herb Caen and others for its modern architecture, which they considered ugly (modernist architecture did not come to dominate downtown San Francisco until the 1970s). Part of the movie The Conversation takes place there.

Pentecostal evangelist A.A. Allen died at this hotel in 1970.[7] In 1973, the jury in the trial of Ruchell Magee was sequestered at the Jack Tar Hotel.[8] In 1982, after major renovations, it became the Cathedral Hill Hotel. A major fire occurred in December 1983, causing the hotel to rebuild again. The hotel finally closed on October 30, 2009 and was demolished in November 2013 to make way for an expansion of California Pacific Medical Center.[9][10]

Durham, North Carolina

The former Jack Tar Motor Lodge in Durham, North Carolina was renovated and reopened as the first property in the Dream Hotel Group's new Unscripted Hotels brand. The renovated hotel has 74 rooms, a pool deck on the third floor, and restaurants on the ground floor. Unscripted Durham opened July 20, 2017.[11][12]

Galveston, Texas

Jack Tar Court Galveston.jpg

There was a 225-room Jack Tar Hotel in Galveston, Texas, as described above.

Orange, Texas

There was a Jack Tar Hotel in Orange, Texas on the corner of N 5th Street and W Division Ave in downtown. The popular hotel, built in the 1950s, featured a barbershop, ballroom, stores and a restaurant famous for its prime rib. Behind the building was a garden terrace area with shaded tables and a swimming pool. The Orange location was also base of operations for water events such as the Aqua Demons and Debs ski shows in the 1950s. The hotel eventually became home to a number of retirement centers, the last of which closed in 2006. The building was demolished in 2011. [13]

Lansing, Michigan

Originally opened in 1926 as the Hotel Olds, built and operated by the Lansing Community Hotel Corporation which included R.E. Olds, the Jack Tar hotel chain purchased the property at 111 South Capitol Avenue in 1960 and renamed it "Jack Tar Lansing." In 1970, the hotel was renamed the Olds Plaza following a sale to an Alma, Michigan oil businessman and subsequent renovation. In 1974, however, a different Alma-based layer and entrepreneur purchased the property and renamed it again to The Plaza Hotel. Some of the hotel was converted to offices and meeting space was reduced. It became part of the TravelLodge chain in 1983 when the number of hotel rooms was at 100, down from 400 at its peak. The now-debt-ridden hotel was foreclosed on in 1985, long-term residents were evicted and the hotel closed. The building was sold to the State of Michigan in 1988, completely gutted and renovated by Hobbs & Black Associates into state offices as the George W. Romney Building and now houses the Office of the Governor and other state offices.

Greenville, South Carolina

There was a Jack Tar Hotel in Greenville, South Carolina. It was originally called "Poinsett Hotel" and was changed to "Jack Tar Poinsett" when it became part of the chain.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Carwile, Guy W. (Winter 2009). "Paradise Lost: The Galveston Jack Tar Motor Hotel". Cite: The Architecture + Design Review of Houston. Rice Design Alliance. 77: 30–35.
  2. ^ "EH Hunt Of Jack Tar Hotel Chain". St. Petersburg Times. February 14, 1966. Retrieved 2009-04-01.
  3. ^ Long, E. John (December 4, 1960). "A City-in-the-Making in the Bahamas". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-04-01.
  4. ^ "Jack Tar Hotel Chain Takes Over Key Colony Resort". Chicago Tribune. March 13, 1955. Retrieved 2009-04-01.
  5. ^ "ALLEGRO RESORTS Corp. To Acquire Jack Tar Village Resorts". Global Industry News. Hospitality Net. January 23, 1997.
  6. ^ "Allegro to Acquire Jack Tar Village Resorts". Mexican and Caribbean newspapers » Caribbean Update » March 1997. HighBeam Research. March 1, 1997. Archived from the original on October 25, 2012.
  7. ^ "Alcoholism Took Life of Evangelist Allen". Daily Report. June 25, 1970. Retrieved 2007-05-17.[dead link]
  8. ^ "Magee Mistrial—Jury Talks of the Deadlock" (PDF). San Francisco Chronicle. April 4, 1973. p. 1. Retrieved July 9, 2010.
  9. ^ Justin Berti (7 January 2011). "Hotel Becomes Hospital". San Francisco Chronicle.
  10. ^ Carl Noltei (2013-11-19). "End of line for S.F.'s infamous Jack Tar Hotel". SFGate. Retrieved 2014-03-02.
  11. ^ Bracken, David (27 April 2016). "Durham's Jack Tar to be flagship property for new hotel brand". The News & Observer. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
  12. ^ "Grand Opening Wrap-Up – Unscripted Hotels". Retrieved 17 January 2019.
  13. ^ "The Jack Tar Orange House hotel is slated for demolition". Beaumont Enterprise. 23 February 2011. Retrieved 17 January 2019.
This page was last edited on 17 January 2020, at 11:28
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