Cover image courtesy the Jim Seelen Motel Images Collection
This week, we’re continuing our Motel Monday holiday theme with a look at a Las Vegas classic – the Holiday Motel.
Built in 1952, The Holiday Motel was originally called the Holiday Inn. And though it was built the same year as Kemmon Wilson’s famous motel chain, there was no affiliation. It would, however, keep the “Holiday Inn” name until 1958 when it was changed to Holiday Motel.
The motel was a perfect example of the Googie-style of architecture that would rule mid-century modern American business for nearly two decades. (Its sign, too, was the epitome of Googie signs, but we’ll get to that in a minute.)
The motel was conveniently located on the Las Vegas Strip, just up the street from the Sahara Casino. (Incidentally, the Sahara was also built 1952.) It featured 93 air-conditioned, king-sized rooms that came with a black and white TV (later color) and a telephone. The motel also had a pool.
The High Sign
Next we move on to that great big beautiful sign that was erected sometime between August 1956 and February 1958. Originally reading “Holiday Inn”, the sign, too, was changed to read “Holiday Motel” sometime in 1958. Again, this sign is a great example of the Googie style that was popular among roadside businesses in mid-century America.
The pylon sign was done in a palette of blue, red, and yellow. In fact, the only thing that differed from the color scheme were the neon letters that, when lit, were multicolored. Like the Holiday Inn sign, this sign also feature an arrow pointing to the motel entrance. What’s more the arrow was also a “chaser” light of incandescent bulbs that followed the arrow from tail to tip. It sat atop a square shape portion of the sign that read “Holiday Motel” that read. Above the arrow was a semi-circle rainbow design with five metal rods shooting out of the rainbow. At the end of these rods were circles. At night, the rods and the circles were animated and moved back and forth in a tick-tock motion. Finally, on the side of the sign facing the road, white letters inside of red circles spell out the word “MOTEL”.
Signs of the End
The hotel and its beautiful Googie signage were sold in 2018. Four years later, the motel was renovated into boutique apartments. The new owners reassured sign enthusiasts that they liked the sign and were keeping it. Today, however, the sign is nowhere to be found.
Sadly this seems to be a sign of the times, not only in Vegas, but throughout roadside America. So, do yourself a favor and get out and see these fine examples of mid-century modern America while you can.
You know, even in the deserts of Las Vegas, the nights can get pretty chilly this time of year. That’s why no matter where they live, give your friends and family a gift from Stuckey’s this year.
Over at our website you’ll find great Christmas gift ideas like our Stuckey’s branded “Merry Christmas, Y’all” holiday t-shirt. There’s also a big variety of Stuckey’s branded hoodies to help keep them comfy cozy all year long. (While your browsing, don’t forget our iconic pecan log rolls and classic pecan pralines, make great stocking stuffers, too.)
What’s more, we’ve brought back our Stuckey’s Mystery Box for that person on your list that seems to have everything. They may seem to have everything, but they haven’t seen anything like what we’ve stuffed our Stuckey’s Mystery Boxes with. There could be a slot machine bank from Las Vegas, a Stuckey’s coffee mug, or a Barry Manilow action figure. (There could also be all three.) One thing’s for sure: Every Stuckey’s Mystery Box comes with a free pecan log roll and Stuckey’s merch.
What will be in your Stuckey’s Mystery Box? There’s only one way to find out. Order yours today only from stuckeys.com.
Stuckey’s: We’re Making Road Trips (and Holidays) Fun Again!
Whether your next road trip is by car or by rail, it’s not really a road trip without taking Stuckey’s along. From our world famous Stuckey’s Pecan Log Rolls to our mouthwatering Hunkey Dorey, Stuckey’s has all the road trips snacks you’ll need to get you where you’re going.
For all of the pecany good treats and cool merch you’ll need for your next big road adventure, browse our online store now!
Stuckey’s – We’re Making Road Trips Fun Again!