Historic Hotels of America(R) Has an Affinity for Animals of All Shapes and Sizes

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24 /PRNewswire/ — Think pet-friendly hotels are a recent phenomena? Guess again. Some of America’s oldest hotels have hosted guests of all persuasions, from four-legged friends to songbirds and steers. For a listing of more than 60 pet-friendly hotels, visit the Historic Hotels of America website, http://www.historichotels.org/catalog/Vacations_and_Leisure/Pet_Friendly.htm

Alligators with Attitude

In the first half of the 20th century, live alligators graced the fountain of Palm Court at the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Va. According to legend, travelers purchased the ‘gators as pets in Florida and accompanied them to Richmond. Upon checking out, the owners gave the alligators to the hotel. Bellmen would find them reclining upon the hotel’s luxurious lobby furniture.

A Horse is a Horse … of Course!

During a Music City visit in the 1940s, singing cowboy and cinema star Gene Autry checked into the elegant Hermitage Hotel in Nashville, Tenn. Naturally, he was accompanied by his favorite co-star, his horse Champion. Photographs of Autry signing the hotel register show Champion by his side in the hotel’s lobby.

Charlie Farrae, a long-time employee at the Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans, recalls reporting to work and finding two enormous Clydesdale horses in the hotel lobby shooting a commercial. William A. Monteleone, the hotel’s owner, was a friend of August Busch of the Anheuser-Busch Brewing Company. The giant animals filled the hotel’s lobby but the century-old marble floor never cracked under the horses’ combined weight of nearly two tons!

Going to the Dogs

Catie Copley is the canine ambassador at The Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston. Catie greets guests, is available for walks and runs and serves as a community liaison. The concierge staff maintains Catie’s appointment book and she has her own e-mail address.

For additional stories and a sampling of available images, visit http://www.historichotels.org/Page/News/id/24.htm

Historic Hotels of America, a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, has identified more than 200 hotels that have faithfully maintained their historic integrity, architectural and ambiance. To be selected for this prestigious program, a hotel must be at least 50 years old, listed in or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places or recognized as having historic significance. Reservations can be made though Historic Hotels of America http://www.historichotels.org/.

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