Properties such as the Brunswick Hotel and Beale Celebrations are more than mere investment opportunities. They are also more than places to open and business or express your entrepreneurial spirit. They are tangible links to another era. They bridge the chasm that divides the past from the present. Some historic buildings are like a foot bridge, others are akin to a glorious steel truss bridge spanning a roaring river framed by towering forest.
The Brunswick Hotel is the latter. At first glance it appears to be a cold stone edifice with the personality of a hammer. Look deeper and you will see that this is a true diamond in the rough. It is an almost pristine relic from the final years of the territorial era in Arizona. Peer through the windows, look at the ceiling and banister, look at the windows themselves as well as the stones. Now, dare to imagine.
The historic business district in Kingman is experiencing a rather dramatic renaissance. There are festivals and galleries, wine bars and microbreweries, venues for concerts and conferences. What is lacking are lodging opportunities in the immediate area. Imagine the Brunswick as a boutique hotel with restaurants and shops lining Route 66. The historic depot is almost directly across the street, and Amtrak flows from Chicago to Los Angeles and back again making twice daily stops.
The old hotel was never Kingman’s finest, that honor was reserved for the Hotel Beale. Still, it provided guests with modern amenities and as early as 1927 it was listed as AAA recommended property in the Hotel, Garage and Service Station Guide, a prestigious honor not awarded the Kingman Hotel or Commercial Hotel. And it has a fair bit of celebrity association. On July 16, 1915, the then 21-year old Edsel Ford, son of Henry Ford stopped for the night after a long days drive from Williams. He and some college buddies were taking in the sights during a trip along the National Old Trails Highway on a trip from Michigan to California. Legendary rancher Tap Duncan was often seen at the bar. There was a small impromptu wedding reception at the hotel in March 1939 for newlywed Clark Gable and Carol Lombard.
The hotel closed in the 1950’s. Still the hotel remained a focal point for the city as El Mohave restaurant operated by the Otero family was a local favorite. It also served countless hungry travelers as they motored east and west along Route 66. Then came a period of abandonment, and an abbreviated attempt to revive the landmark. The refurbished restaurant proved popular but not economically viable. So, today it is a diamond in the rough awaiting an owner with passion, with vision, with business skills and a dream. With Kingman poised to become a vacation destination, the old hotel could easily again become a focal point in a thriving and bustling historic business district.
Written by Jim Hinckley of Jim Hinckley’s America
From 2014, the year that the City of Kingman hosted the International Route 66 Festival, to the summer of 2019, the historic business district has experienced a rather dramatic renaissance. The building that now houses Beale Celebrations figured prominently in that historic event. At the grassroots level organizers are meeting to discuss an even larger event in 2021 as the first in a series of festivals that countdown to the Route 66 centennial. Beale Celebrations will figure prominently in each of these events and as a result this historic building that is currently for sale represents an investment opportunity.
The Route 66 festival in 2014 was more than just an historic event that sparked the Kingman renaissance. It had a far reaching affect on the Route 66 community for the European Route 66 Festivals to the Miles of Possibility Conference and establishment of the world’s first electric vehicle museum. Plans for launching a series of festivals that countdown to the centennial in 2026 are at this stage less than dreams. Still, Route 66 associations in Europe as well as Japan, and organizations as well as personalities all along the Route 66 corridor have expressed interest as well as support. Beale Celebrations could be utilized for a number of purposes during these festivals. It could again be used as the gathering point for authors, artists, and collectors. Or it could be used for the hosting of the conference that was held at the Mohave County Supervisors chambers in 2014.
This, however, is but one role that Beale Celebrations could play in the continuing development of the historic business district in Kingman. Increasingly there is a need for an events center, a conference center, a small concert venue, and display center during events such as First Friday that are held in the historic heart of the city. Kingman is ideally situated to capitalize on its location and host conferences on rural development, tourism, economic development or most anything that can be imagined, and Beale Celebrations figures prominently. The city is located less than 90 minutes from the international airport in Las Vegas, Nevada. Amtrak access to Los Angeles and Albuquerque is direct. With completion of I-11 the drive time from Phoenix and Tucson will be dramatically shortened.
The possibilities don’t end there. As Kingman’s climate is usually 15 to 20 degrees cooler than in neighboring Lake Havasu City and Bullhead City during the months of summer, it is ideally situated for the hosting of tri-city conferences or events. And, again, Beale Celebrations figures prominently.
Now is definitely the time to consider in investing in historic Kingman. The inventory of available buildings and properties within the district is limited. And it is shrinking as investors and entrepreneurs renovate properties, open small business or offices, and as tourists increasingly see the city as a destination. Beale Celebrations, as well as the historic Brunswick Hotel, and the restaurant that currently houses Garibaldi’s, are currently for sale. They are among prime properties within the historic business district. Don’t let opportunity pass you by!
Written by Jim Hinckley of Jim Hinckley’s America –
It has cast a long shadow over Front Street, now Andy Devine Avenue (Route 66) for more than 110-years. It was the first three story building in Kingman, Arizona. Even though it wasn’t quite as classy as its neighbor the Hotel Beale the Brunswick Hotel was the pride of the city in the years that bracketed statehood in 1912, and more than a few celebrities have signed the guest register or dined in the restaurant. Edsel Ford was a guest on July 16, 1915 during his trip to the Panama Pacific Exposition in California. Louis L’Amour was a regular patron of the bar on his trips into Kingman from the Katherine Mine where he worked in the 1920’s. A brief reception for Clark Gable and Carol Lombard was held in the restaurant after they married at the Kingman Methodist-Episcopal church in March 1939. In the Hotel, Garage, Service Station & AAA Club Directory for 1927 the hotel is listed as recommended lodging, for $1.00 per night. Read More
If you are looking for opportunity it is blossoming in Kingman, Arizona, a dusty high desert town on the cusp of becoming a major destination. The historic Brunswick Hotel and Beale Celebrations event center are currently for sale and the savvy investor would have to look far and wide to find a more lucrative opportunity. Most every weekend there is an event in the historic business district, and increasingly Kingman is becoming a destination for legions of Route 66 travelers, mountain bikers, arts enthusiasts and people from the Los Angeles metropolitan area as well as Phoenix in search of a fun weekend getaway.
The growing popularity of Route 66 is nothing short of astounding. There are active Route 66 associations in France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Czech Republic, Japan, and Brazil. Attendance of the second European Route 66 Festival in Zlin, Czech republic was estimated at more than 20,000 people from ten countries. There are companies that specialize in Route 66 tours based in Australia, Czech Republic, New Zealand, Germany and the Netherlands. Kingman is located at the center of the longest remaining uninterrupted segment of Route 66, 160 miles. Consistently this portion of iconic Route 66 is rated as the most scenic anywhere between Chicago and Santa Monica, California. Read More
In recent years there has been a rather dramatic transformation of the historic business district in Kingman, Arizona. Art galleries, restaurants, microbreweries, wine bars, and vibrant events are replacing shuttered storefronts, empty street after 5:00 P.M. and thrift stores. For the young entrepreneur or savvy investor opportunity is knocking. Recently that opportunity was framed in neon when it was announced that Beale Celebrations is for sale! Opportunity doesn’t stop there. Also for sale is the blank slate that is the Brunswick Hotel, as well as the turn key restaurant currently leased by Luigi Garibaldi, and Brunswick Suites.
The Brunswick Hotel represents an incredible array of diverse opportunities. The ground floor is ideally suited for use as a restaurant and lounge. There is an expansive dry basement that could be used for storage, or perhaps, a wine bar.
Currently lodging in the historic district is limited. There is a desperate need for a hotel at the heart of the renaissance. The Brunswick Hotel is ideally suited for development as a boutique hotel property, and it is located just one block from the railroad depot. Kingman is served by Amtrak and is on a direct line that connects Chicago with Los Angeles. With the recent restoration of the La Posada railroad hotel in Winslow, and the ongoing restoration of the Castaneda Hotel in Las Vegas, New Mexico, Amtrak is again becoming a popular options for travelers in the southwest. The popularity of the Brunswick Suites in the rear courtyard provides a hint at what is possible. Another option would development of the property as a restaurant and office complex. There is also a need for office space in downtown Kingman. Read More
The Brunswick Hotel has stood as a silent sentinel to a flow of history in Kingman
for more than a century. A celebration took place at the hotel in February 1912 when Arizona made the transition from territory to state. Dating to 1951 the Beale Celebrations building is a relative newcomer in Kingman but it too has withstood decades of change that transformed what is now the historic business district.
The Brunswick Hotel was the city’s first three story building. Edsel spent the night of July 16, 1915 at the hotel during his westward jaunt along the National Old Trails Road. When Clark Gable and Carol Lombard married in March 1939, an impromptu reception was held in the hotel’s restaurant. Read More
The historic business district in Kingman, Arizona,
and the Route 66 corridor through town, is experiencing a rather dramatic renaissance. At every turn there are signs of renewal; refurbished and new neon signage created by Legacy Signs shines bright at Rickety Cricket, Beale Celebrations, and Floyd & Company. On Andy Devine Avenue, Route 66, the long shuttered historic Beale Hotel and other store fronts are tangible links to a time when this district was forlorn and forgotten. Even among the weathered facades and vacant lots, the glow of neon again shines bright.
At Mr. D’z Route 66 Diner, the former Frontier Cafe sign has been repurposed. Next door at Dunton Motors Dream Machines, a family owned business that opened in 1946, an early 1960’s OK Used Car signs cast a colorful glow over vintage cars giving the dealership a time capsule feel. The 1930’s Desert Drug sign, a piece of custom neon artistry for the downtown branch of the post office, and the towering Packard sign that dates to about 1930 on the front of the Old Trails Garage are popular photo ops during the Promote Kingman neon night walking tours guided by author and historian Jim Hinckley of Jim Hinckley’s America. Read More
The historic business district in Kingman, Arizona has changed rather
dramatically since a row of territorial era homes was cleared from the Fourth and Beale Street corner in the early 1950’s, and a modern J.C. Penny was built. Kingman in those years was a modern, bustling community that was firmly rooted in its frontier era origins.
Route 66 funneled an endless stream of cars and trucks through town on Front Street. A few years latter the towns favorite son would be honored with the renaming of the Route 66 corridor to Andy Devine Avenue. With more than 2,000 vehicles per day passing through Kingman, it was a boom time for motels, service stations, garages, and restaurants. Read More
Last month I shared a glimpse of the future that is built on what was started in
2014. In that post I noted that Kingman, and what was then a nondescript building at the heart of the historic business district, a former J.C. Penny’s (now Beale Celebrations) seemed an unlikely place for a convention with participants traveling from throughout the United States and Europe to attend. Even more surprising is the fact that this historic convention, the International Route 66 Festival, continues to influence and affect the Route 66 community. Read More
Let’s take a moment to imagine, to give flight to fancy. Let’s take a moment to dream, and
perhaps, to find ways to make the dream a reality. First, a bit of history.
In 2014 the City of Kingman hosted the International Route 66 Festival. The building that would become Beale Celebrations was a focal point for the event with its central location and the exhibition of authors and artists. Read More