After years of standing idle, St. Clairsville's legendary Clarendon Hotel has been sold to a company that specializes in restoring and re-purposing historic structures.
The 124-year-old brick and stone structure will consist of 12 to 18 extended stay apartments, and work is expected to begin soon.
When it was built in 1890, the Clarendon Hotel was the grand hotel of the National Road. Its Romanesque Revival architecture made it one of the cornerstones of St. Clairsville. Over the years it deteriorated, finally becoming low-income sleeping rooms where police were often called, because of drug use and even at one point, a meth lab.
The City of St. Clairsville recognized its innate value, and completed two phases of restoration before funding dried up in 2009. Now, three businessmen from Louisville, Ohio, say the Clarendon is a gem within a charming community. The three owners have a history of restoring old buildings to productive re-use. They commended City Service Director Dennis Bigler for his long-time dedication to the project.
They said most of the buildings they obtain "have the roof lying in the basement."
The Clarendon has three stories, featuring a
grand staircase, original woodwork, a unique black marble fireplace and a
skylight at the top of the stairs. Work on the $2 million project
is expected to begin soon and may even be finished by the end of the
year. They believe the units will be rented even before completion,
possibly to engineers and management in the gas and oil drilling