Friday, March 7, 2008

A dash of history behind our Hacienda Motel t-shirt

We thought we'd wrap up the week by sharing some of the history behind our Hacienda Motel and Dining Room t-shirt (which was located in Norfolk, Virginia). All text and images can also be found at Vintage Roadside located here.

“The last word in comfort and convenience" - the motto of the Hacienda Motel and Dining Room in Norfolk, Virginia entices us to this day.

The Hacienda was ideally situated just 15 minutes from downtown Norfolk and 15 minutes from Virginia Beach on Military Highway, more famously known as Ocean Highway. Running from New York City to Jacksonville, Florida, Ocean Highway was conceptualized in the 1930s as a beautiful, leisurely drive for tourists exploring the beaches along the east coast of the US. From its inception, Ocean Highway has remained the most popular route for tourists traveling south from New York City seeking fun in the sun.

Built in the style of the great motor courts of the Southwest, the Hacienda was a classic example of tourist court architecture popular in the 1940s and 1950s. Serving a dual purpose, the Hacienda's dramatic two storey Mission style facade drew the attention of passing motorists and shielded its cottages from highway traffic. Arriving guests entered the spacious inner court by one of two striking arched entries in the grand fa├žade.

Along with a wonderful location, W. H. Walker, owner of the Hacienda, offered his guests the finest amenities:

  • A choice of 1, 2, or 3 room cottages
  • Simmons all-metal furniture
  • Beautyrest mattresses with box springs
  • FM Radio
  • Radiant heat and cross ventilation
  • Air conditioning
  • Private tile baths
  • Pure circulating ice water
The once rural site of the Hacienda Motel is now occupied by The Gallery at Military Circle.

If you'd like to see more, including two wonderful images please visit our Hacienda Motel page located here.

We're always looking for more history to present with each of the businesses we feature so please let us know if you have any memories, stories, souvenirs or photos of these wonderful places.

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