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20130104

Found Friday - Hotel Traymore


This tiny print was found in a small shop in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Lately I have had much enjoyment researching the captions and identifications on Found Photographs. This one led me on a curious trail.

The Hotel Traymore of Atlantic City, New Jersey began as a boarding house in 1879. It was rebuilt more than once and expanded. At its peak it could accommodate as many as 1500 guests. The Traymore featured four faucets in every bathtub: hot and cold city water, hot and cold ocean water. There was a fifth faucet in the sink for ice water.


Hotel Traymore - Atlantic City

Vintage Postcard, Hotel Traymore, Atlantic City, New Jersey

Unfortunately, the hotel exists today only in poorly tinted post card views and a scant few amateur snapshots. There are several post cards depicting the Hotel here on Flicker.

Kind Flikrite riptheskull has made this post card available through Creative Commons License. I present this one here to give an idea of what the Hotel Traymore looked like in its heyday.

Here is a Gallery.



It deteriorated from the 1950’s and in April, 1972 it was imploded.

To this day, it remains the largest single implosion on record according to the Guinness Book of such things.

All that remains to this day is a large empty lot. (It can be seen in GoogleEarth. 39 21 32 41 N 74 25 50 92 W)

I have no actual facts to support this but this is my theory:
Building codes. Today's building regulations are far different than the regs in effect in 1915. Many building materials that were standard back then, today are forbidden: Iron drain Pipes, lead water pipes, and that old nemesis, asbestos. Any remodeling would have to include bringing things "up to code." The Hotel Settles (see photograph below) cost a reported 30 million dollars to restore only 68 rooms of it's original 150. 1500 rooms would be prohibitive. But, why has the lot been sitting empty for all this time?




Hotel Traymore - Atlantic City

In 2006, (34 years later) Pinnacle Entertainment announced that it purchased the Traymore site and the adjacent Sands Atlantic City casino hotel. Pinnacle demolished the Sands and planned to develop a new casino on the combined land. Harsh economic times later caused Pinnacle to delay construction of the new resort. In February 2010, the company announced that it had canceled its construction plans and would instead seek to sell the land.


I have seen a few vacant hotels in a lot of places such as the Hotel Clovis in Clovis, New Mexico and the Baker in Mineral Wells and the Settles in Big Spring, Texas come to mind. These are in relatively small towns, out in the Great Southwestern Plains, devastated by the loss of passenger train travel. That's easier to understand.

But the Traymore accommodated up to 1500 guests! All three of the hotels, The Clovis, The Settles and The Baker, COMBINED didn't have that capacity! The Traymore was on the Jersey Shore; Beach Front! And what a historical building! Why?

Baker Hotel and resort, Mineral Wells, Texas.
Baker Hotel and resort, Mineral Wells, Texas

Hotel Settles - Big Spring, Texas

After some 30 million dollars spent in restoration,the Hotel Settles REOPENED on December 30, 2012, after more than three decades of sitting empty.

Hotel Clovis.
Hotel Clovis, Clovis New Mexico

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