AP NEWS

Arizona desert oasis Castle Hot Springs scheduled to reopen

April 9, 2018

PRESCOTT, Ariz. (AP) — The Arizona desert oasis Castle Hot Springs, which was damaged in the 1970s by a fire, has been slotted to reopen in October.

Dozens of workers are onsite, renovating historic structures, building new bungalows and planting a garden that will supply a new restaurant at the resort located in a remote area between Phoenix and Prescott, the Daily Courier reported .

Steve Sampson, director of national sales for Westroc Hospitality, said the Scottsdale-based company plans to reopen the resort on Oct. 1.

The resort attracted a plethora of famous names in its heyday, including a World War II stay by then-future President John F. Kennedy as he recuperated from injuries he suffered during the sinking of his ship. Families such as the Rockefellers, Wrigleys, Vanderbilts and Fords were among the regular names on the resort’s guest list at the turn of the 20th century.

The resort was left largely deserted after the fire in the ’70s. A host of development plans have come and gone over the years. Sharlot Hall Museum’s files include renovation site-plan information dating back to the 1980s, as well as real-estate brochures from the early 2000s.

“Since 1980 to now, there have been four or five different owners,” Sampson said.

Westroc has been working on its renovations since about 2015, he said, adding that the company’s goal is to bring Castle Hot Springs back to its former glory.

Castle Hot Springs’ 1896 opening occurred decades before the 1929 openings of grand Phoenix resorts such as Arizona Biltmore and the Wigwam, and it also predates the 1905 opening of the Grand Canyon’s historic El Tovar.

Once complete, the new rendition of Castle Hot Springs will offer 32 accommodations, consisting of a variety of spring bungalows that will have private outdoor spring-fed hot tubs, and sky-view cabins that will capitalize on the dark skies of the desert location, the Daily Courier reported.

Guests will also have access to the resort’s original swimming pool and the network of palm-tree-bordered pools that are fed by the spring water cascading down the mountainside.

A 5,000-square-foot (464-square-meter) garden featuring rows of rare fruits and vegetables is also in the works.

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Information from: The Daily Courier, http://www.dcourier.com

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