Glenwood Hot Springs under contract to buy Hotel Colorado |

Glenwood Hot Springs under contract to buy Hotel Colorado

Hot Springs owners announced Thursday that they are under contract to purchase the 123-year-old Hotel Colorado, which overlooks the pool and bathhouse from Sixth Street.
Chelsea Self / Post Independent |

The historic Glenwood Hot Springs Pool and Hotel Colorado are engaged to be re-married after a 70-year separation.

Hot Springs owners announced Thursday that they are under contract to purchase the 123-year-old Hotel Colorado, which overlooks the pool and bathhouse from Sixth Street.

Both landmark properties were developed by Walter Devereux in the late 19th century, the Glenwood Hot Springs and its iconic bathhouse in 1888, followed by the Hotel Colorado in 1893.

The properties were sold off individually but then they rejoined under one umbrella from 1937-1946. The nearby vapor caves were also part of that ownership group. Since 1946, the Hotel Colorado has operated independently with numerous proprietors.

The transaction is still in the works with the current Hotel Colorado owners, Glenwood Properties Inc., a family owned company from Kansas that purchased the property in 1989 for $1.3 million.

John Bosco, Glenwood Hot Springs vice president and chief operating and finance officer, said the deal is expected a close in early 2017. A purchase price has not been announced.

“As we continue to navigate toward closing, particulars such as purchase price and specific details are still confidential at this point,” Bosco said. “More information will be shared publicly as it becomes available.”

Glenwood Hot Springs President and CEO Kjell Mitchell said the hotel acquisition is an opportunity to create a new synergy between the Hot Springs pool and lodge and the neighboring Hotel Colorado, which was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.

“We’re very excited about this if it comes to pass,” Mitchell said. “Hotel Colorado is an icon in the western United States, and we are thrilled to reconnect it with Glenwood Hot Springs.

“We fully intend to preserve the character and integrity of the property,” he said. Because it is on the Historic Register it must adhere to specific guidelines to maintain that designation.

“These two places are historically significant, and we plan to uphold their legacy,” Mitchell said, adding the new ownership is already making plans for extensive renovations, remodeling and upgrades.

The news comes directly on the heels of an announcement Wednesday that the owners of the Hotel Denver in Glenwood Springs, Steve and April Carver, are the new owners of the historic Redstone Castle.

The Carvers were the successful bidders in a property auction last month, purchasing the storied Crystal River Valley property, formally known as Cleveholm Manor, for $2.2 million.

According to a historical narrative on the Hotel Colorado website, the mountain retreat gained favor soon after it was built and through the decades as a respite for the wealthy and social elite, including the unsinkable Molly Brown, and as a place of healing with its European-fashioned spa.

“Devereux spared no expense in the creation of the ‘Grande Dame,’” as it become known.

“The south court, the current courtyard, had a large pool in its center from which an electrically lit fountain shot a jet of water 185 feet high into the air, making an iridescent rainbow spray against the sunlight.”

Numerous presidents from the early 20th century stayed at the Hotel Colorado, including William Howard Taft and more famously, Theodore Roosevelt, who stayed for long stints during his frequent bear and mountain lion hunting expeditions, and who once spoke to 700 people from what’s now called the Roosevelt balcony.

The hotel has for several years been managed by Providence Hospitality Partners. Hotel representatives could not be reached for comment for this story.

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