Friday, October 2, 2009

Friday Shoot Out- Building Study







The Baker Hotel
c. 1929









'Study of a Building' by Blogger Team is this weeks assignment...

I just returned from a long trek in my van, and was exhausted. I did not do any studies around my town, but will return to giving you some of what Princeton has to offer in next weeks assignment.

For now I will introduce you to The Baker Hotel in Mineral Wells, Texas. The building has been described by various writers as "The Grand old Lady of Mineral Wells".

I have been in love with this building since i was a young girl living in Texas. We would pass through this town to visit my great grandmother, and on to the birth place of my father in Breckenridge, Texas.

Known for its therapeutic mineral water. Doctors were know to prescribe to their patients a week or so stay at one of these pampering hotels, and if you could afford it...well...many could, and the hotel had over 440 rooms, and fourteen stories for those who took their doctors advise...
























A guy I dated long ago, Denis was studying at Baylor to work in Gerontology, and had plans of making this the building it once was. More of a retirement village for the super aging...was a great idea. The money to restore it would have been astronomical for those times...




















At one time the ornamental details to this place were still vibrant, like the prickly pear cactus petals you see here are still hanging on to the ledge...I found one on the ground, and have saved it for memory...




















Other details still remain, such as the colors that remind me of New Mexico in many ways...



















There are stories of ghost that still haunt the corridors they say. I was hoping to look up and see one staring down at me...or was I?




















Great walls and chain link fences are up all around the back areas to keep vandals out, and to keep us out of danger. How I long to pass through the front doors and see its still glorious interiors...



















Many came from miles to bath in the pool of mineral water. As my aunt and I walked around she shared her memories of swimming here as a child while my grandfather made general repairs about the grounds for extra cash...




















It is amazing that such a large piece of historical property is not maintained, but Mineral Wells is such a poor area, that much of the town lay to waste.

This cabana barely visible was for guest to pick up their towels and refreshments...




















What lay about this area of Texas is mostly mesquite, prickly pear cactus (they grow on top of the hotel ledges), rocky terrain and dust, abandoned store fronts and homes, and rattle snakes.

Hints of dangers still present as a reminder of what the old pioneers, cowboys, and rich north eastern folk faced when building their oasis in the middle of no where...




















Even the garage across the street was grand, and still in good condition today...




















A peek through the front doors give us an idea of this lobby's once beautiful existence...








[Photo taken from above website...otherwise all photos belong to, and taken by Chef E]









Thanks for joining me on my journey back into the past of this giant that still stands and awaits to be restored...

If you are interested in joining our Friday Shoot Out Team; then go to my right side bar and let us know...it is that easy!

21 comments:

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

Thanks E- that was wonderful!
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~JarieLyn~ said...

This is a wonderful old building. I bet it was quite the place in its hayday. What year did it close down? It's a shame to see it empty and abandoned. Great photos and very interesting.

doggybloggy said...
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Carrie said...

I love the architecture - beautiful! I shot a supposedly haunted building as well but I did not get acquainted with a ghost, either!

Ann said...

http://annkschin.blogspot.com/2009/09/friday-shoot-outnanyang-technological.html

My FSO was posted early. like you I went on a short trip. Coming home was tiring.

Your ex BF's spa is great. Did you get to go in and be pampered? We too have a building built for that purpose in Rotorua. I can't believe people at that time was into therapeutic baths.

Pauline said...

Shades of days gone by! I've only just started visiting everyones blogs and already I am sad, I hope there aren't too many more sad stories. I will have to give myself a slap and remind myself they are just buildings. Thanks for sharing this lovely building with us.

Mary said...

What a wonderful place. The kind I will only see in movies. So, sad too.

Linda said...

Your hotel is like the Guild Inn in Barry's shoot. It is sad they do not look after these grand old ladies. The Baker Hotel is gorgeous and I really enjoyed your presentation. The managers seemed to really care about their guests health in the 20's and 30's. Devine, Chef E. Thank you.

Doreen said...

the entrances are so grand! even to the garage. have a fantastic weekend!!

Simply Heather said...

That's quite the building. It's hard to believe that architecture such as this would be allowed to crumble. It's beautiful, really.

A Scattering said...

How beautiful and sad. You did a great job of portraying it.

Chris said...

Neat. it reminds me of Waverly Hills Sanitorium.

GigiSxm said...

lots of ghosts in this weeks shootout. Thanks for sharing

Alexis AKA MOM said...

Wow what a wonderful building love the pictures and as always the post about it makes me feel like I'm right there :)

Jen said...

What a cool building. I love it! You photographed it beautifully, and I love knowing the history.

Denise said...

I would love to have a "mineral bath". My body could use some medicinal minerals.

Just telling it like it is said...

Lovely... mean I like our bresty photos better but I'll take these to be very artisitic

J9 said...

It is a shame that this isn't restored to a fabulous resort - it would be amazing!

Ellisa said...

what a great journey I've been on through your photos. Looks like you and I have the same interest in the "what it could be...what it was" of a building.

Patty said...

And what a grand old lady she was. Great photo study. I love old buildings but I so hate to see them let go like that. Other countries can maintain old buildings for centuries. We let ours go, tear them down, and put up tinker-toys.

Sorry I missed you. We will get together.

Don't catch all the fish.

Rebecca said...

Oh I hope the building will be renovated. I hate seeing old beauties left to crumble.

Thanks for visiting my blog...sorry I missed yours on my rounds!