Saturday, December 06, 2014

Sleep & Eats, USA!

Today's "Anything Goes Saturday" focuses on motels, and one restaurant... roadside USA! In all three cases, I have no idea where they are (were) located. 

Let's start with this one from August 1961; There's the M/Hotel Laurentides. Is it a hotel, or a motel? I need to know! I looked up the M/Hotel Laurentides and could find nothing about it this specific place. It might be in Quebec (notice the word "entree"!), and there's a moose on the sign - we all know how much Candians love their meese. Check out the row of 50's automobiles. 

I thought that this restaurant (the "Paradise") might be located in Paradise, California. But then it turns out that there are towns by the name of "Paradise" in Nevada, Utah, Washington, Kansas, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Texas. So… I have no clue. But I like the mid-century architecture, complete with turquoise and orange accents. Very "Howard Johnson's" And that black car, it's awesome!

Here's another humble Motel, location unknown. I see one California license plate to the left, but without even a name to go by, this one will be impossible to know. Still, I can't help thinking of my own family's road trips when I was a kid, and of the many small motels (with small kidney-shaped pools glowing blue at night) we stayed in. Ice machines, breakfast in nearby eateries, the noisy kids in the other rooms (we were never noisy!)… it all adds up to good memories.


Nanook said...


That black auto in the 2nd picture is a 1954 Pontiac - probably a Chieftan Deluxe.

And in the final photo - from L to R, the cars are: I'm afraid the first car is stumping me - seems as if it's a Pontiac of some sort, but just not certain; then a 1962 Buick Special; then a 1960 (I think) Plymouth; then a 1963 Chevrolet Impala; then a 1963 Chevrolet Bel Air; and finally, perhaps a 1962 Volkswagen Microbus.

Thanks, Major.

Chuck said...

I love the pre-1965 Canadian flag in the first picture. Definitely dates the photo.

We had a travel trailer and later a mini-motor home, but I still remember some trips in the very early 70's when we stayed at these sorts of places, and they're good memories. I have one very vivid one of being two years old, sandwiched between my parents in a motel bed in Reno, and staring up at what seemed to be an enormous, carved wooden headboard as I drifted off to sleep.

There's still a small bit of mid-century motel kitch that survives on Katella, sandwiched between the street and DCA - the Alpine Inn. I stayed there multiple times between 2006 and 2009, and the rooms were clean and reasonably priced and within easy walking distance of the Parks.

Gojira said...

Major --

Check this out! Restaurant in second picture! In Georgia!


Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, well, I’m impressed! Have you ever watched “Jay Leno’s Garage” on YouTube? I am a car dummy, but MAN, he features some amazing cars. Of course I love the oldies the best. Love him or hate him (I like him), Jay knows his cars.

Chuck, yes, until a few years ago I didn’t know that the maple leaf flag was a relatively recent thing. The Alpine Inn, it even SOUNDS mid-century. I hear good things about the Candy Cane Inn, but it’s probably not very retro.

Gojira, by gum, you did it! How did you find it? I did a search and finally gave up. Sad to see it in such a derelict state today, though.

Melissa said...

My mother calls every hotel a "motel," be it a five-star high-rise resort or a historic bed-and-breakfast. I let it annoy me when I was young, but now I think it's the most adorable thing in the world.

The Paradise looks eerily like a smaller version of the Methodist church I attended when I was little (the same one where I got in trouble for not understanding the difference between walking IN water and walking ON water. Those pesky pronouns and their theological implications!)

Thanks for taking us on another good old American Road Trip! It's a cold, wet day and an afternoon in the Chevroliac was just what I needed.

Melissa said...

Prepositions, not pronouss, dammit!

Melissa said...

Pronouns, not pronouss, dammit!

Melissa said...

Dammit, dammit!

Major Pepperidge said...

Melissa, it's funny how little things that certain people do can annoy, especially when it comes to parents. I'd like to think of The Paradise as a place to worship, since I worship waffles. I hope to have some more "on the road" photos for the blog soon!

MelissaX3, this is a family blog, dammit! ;-)

Anonymous said...

I love old motels, the last one feels like the seashore is just beyond the building, where the guy with the black car tried to drive up the stairs.

@Chuck, I had read somewhere that the Alpine Inn and the old companion restaurant "The Chalet" (now gone) were originally developed by Disney and that this accounted for their high design values of Alpine kitsch, concrete icicles etc. I don't know if that was true or not. It seems like if Disney owned them, they would have been obliterated by DCA... Does anyone know this story, or any other story?

The Alpine Inn is still there, I took some pictures last April, but the way the whole area is being transformed, it won't last much longer before being replaced by a mid-rise hotel.

Anyway, I remember breakfasts at the Chalet on the morning after our day at Disneyland, before the long sad drive home, knowing it would be a whole year before we came back.

Thank you, Major for a trip to my past again.