Midcentury modern is still having a moment, and you can surround yourself with the style at East Texas’ The Fredonia Hotel.
The boutique hotel is located in Nacogdoches, the oldest town in Texas, where red brick streets criss-cross the lively downtown area that’s bursting with antique and vintage shops, plus the new Fredonia Brewery right across the street from the hotel.
The Fredonia Hotel has a unique origin story: It was born a community-owned hotel, financed by the citizens of Nacogdoches who in turn got to select everything from the color of the brick to the hotel’s name (4-year-old Susan McKinney proposed the winner). Hotel Fredonia opened its doors on April 1, 1955, and between 1955 and 1967 it was believed to be the most successful community-owned hotel in the nation.
Named for the Fredonia Rebellion of 1826, when Haden Edwards and a group of settlers declared Nacogdoches independent from Mexico, the new hotel boasted a “modern contemporary-styled hotel building” which was entirely air-conditioned and featured 100 rooms, conference facilities for 600, a patio, and a kidney-shaped pool surrounded by a semi-circle of cabana suites.
After decades of structural changes and ownership transfers, The Fredonia Hotel was purchased in 2015 by local business owners Richard and Barbara Dewitt. The couple vowed to bring the historic property back to life, and after a $18 million renovation it officially reopened on June 26, 2017.
Its modern, luxurious aesthetic also preserves several of the hotel’s original features. For example, the original hotel’s atrium was built around an ancient Catalpa tree, and while the tree eventually had to be cut down it’s now honored with a hand-made iron tree in the current atrium.
Two restaurants, a bar, and a boutique are also onsite, making The Fredonia Hotel the town’s go-to hot spot. The chic Nine Flags Bar showcases refreshing artisanal cocktails and delicious food amid a trendy atmosphere of Edison lightbulbs and sumptuous leather seats.
The 1st City Café is brunch central on the weekends, while The Republic Steakhouse is a world-class fine dining experience that’s unlike anything else offered in the piney woods region. The Shop is a purveyor of exclusive merchandise that ranges from home accessories to gifts for any occasion.
Of the hotel’s two pools, one is heated year-round and features cozy fire pits and al fresco movie nights. You might get so comfy you’ll never want to leave.