Thursday, 3 September 2015

Hobbitland

I had a chat with the Ranger at the Old Faithful Visitor Center.  From a huge window, he had a  view of the most famous geyser in the world but was suitably impressed when I told him that my own office vista encompassed a Norman Castle.  'Now we don't have those'.  he said.

Historic buildings in the US are really young when compared to ours in Europe.  For the last two nights of our stay in Yellowstone, Louis and I were privileged to stay in one.  Construction on the Old Faithful Inn began in 1903.  A mere baby in architectural terms but nothing like I've ever seen before.  It is breathtaking in its difference to any other hotel I've ever seen.  There's no Premier Inn uniformity here. The public areas, a huge lobby with a big stone  four sided fireplace surrounded by balconies, are a mass of knotted wood that reach seven stories up to a Crow's Nest at the top.  Sadly only the bell hops seem to go up there to raise and lower the flags.   Louis was only able to scamper up to the second floor.
Here's our room.  Living in a Box by Living in a Box sprung to mind.  So much wood!  This is one of the original guest rooms. Wings were added to the hotel later in the 1910s and 1920s but apparently they lack the rustic-ness.  As I've mentioned already those windows had a premier view of the entire Lower Geyser Basin.  It got really steamy out there at dawn.


Plumbing was limited to a very pretty and efficient wrought iron radiator and an old wash basin. Having a bath necessitated a trip to one of the tub rooms with their claw footed baths. I took sleepy middle of the night wanders down the corridor for noctural wees!  Those dressing gowns came in very handy.





Here's what all the fuss is about and why people come here in the first place!

And to finish a view of the huge dining room from one of those gnarly balconies.  Musicians used to entertain the guests from here.  I know they'd been there as their names were carved into the wood!

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