There are quite a few places to stay when taking a road trip across America but many of these chain motels and hotels can be a bit characterless. However, if you look, you can still find a few gems which retain the pre-airline style and sophistication from the heyday of cross country travel.
One of these classic hotels is La Posada in Winslow, Arizona. La Posada was one of the last great railway hotel built in the South West of America and described as the finest historic hotel on Route 66.
The History Of La Posada
La Posada was opened as a railway hotel by the Fred Harvey Company in 1929. The hotel was designed by the American architect and designer Mary Colter who created many of the landmark buildings for the Fred Harvey Company and the Santa Fe Railroad.
The hotel is still a railway hotel, the Amtrak service stops at the bottom of La Posada’s garden.
Following the decline of railway travel, La Posada was used as offices and by the 1990’s it was facing demolition. Luckily, it was saved from the wrecking ball and was restored to its former glory in 1997 by artist Tina Mion and her husband Allan Affeldt.
Arrival And Check-In At La Posada
As you enter the Spanish Colonial-style building you are greeted with the colourful trading post and hotel reception. The historic hotel is an attraction in itself for Route 66 travellers even if they are not staying there.
The staff were very helpful and after check-in, you leave the sensory overload of the art and gifts of the trading post and enter the calming and cool public areas of the hotel. The corridors and lounges are decorated in
The hotel is decorated with a range of artwork and designs ranging from many original features from the Fred Harvey and Mary Colter days to contemporary exhibitions from local craftsmen and artists.
The rooms are named after famous previous guests. These guests include Albert Einstein, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Betty Grable and John Wayne (and now Mr and Mrs W from Wales!) The style of the rooms in la Posada follow the same style as the public areas with handwoven Zapotec rugs and Mexican tin and Talavera tile mirrors. Many of the rooms still have the original 1930 black and white mosaic tile bathrooms complete with 6-foot cast-iron tubs.
The Gardens Of La Posada
The hotel sits in its own gardens which were restored in 1997. There are many shady areas where you can sit and simply enjoy the tranquility after a long days drive. We enjoyed sitting in the back garden and watching the long trains of the Santa Fe Railway slowly roll past.
Dinner At The Turquoise Room
On of the most popular attractions of the hotel is the Turquoise Room Dining Room. The name comes from the private dining car of the Super Chief train which was a favourite of the studio bosses and film stars travelling from LA to Chicago.
As you would expect, The Turquoise Room serves South-Western inspired food in the elegant surroundings of the original Harvey House where the waitresses still wear the same uniforms as the famous Harvey Girls. These waitresses were immortalised in the 1946 musical starring Judy Garland, The Harvey Girls.
We had an excellent meal and also a couple of nice drinks in the adjacent Martini lounge which is decorated with menus and drink lists from the original Turquoise Room. It’s a shame today’s prices aren’t the same as the ones on the
We highly recommend stopping at La Posada in Winslow on your Route 66 road trip, we wished we had stayed an extra night.
This review was not sponsored and we paid for the room and all costs ourselves.