Tuesday, November 9th, 2021 Alive 18,459 days
If you wander through the tunnels under downtown Houston, you might run across this. Itʼs a slice of the old Cotton Hotel, preserved underneath the skyscraper known as 811 Main.
Thereʼs a plaque nearby which explains:
This façade belonged to the historic Hotel Cotton, built in 1913 on the southwest corner of Rusk and Fannin. The majority of the façade is from the original building, yet severe damage to the façade later in the hotelʼs history necessitated part of the structure be recreated.
The 11-story Hotel Cotton was developed by Almon Cotton, a wealthy, investment-loan man from Colorado. When the Cotton first opened its doors on Saturday, March 1, 1913, people called the building sensational — it was the first hotel in downtown Houston with a bath in all 152 rooms! Although it was located in what some still considered the countryside (the city had to clear weeds on adjacent land), the Cotton charged very high rates at $1.50 per room and had steady business from the start. The neighboring Stowers Furniture Company building, which still stands today, supplied the first furniture for the Cotton. One Houston newspaper later branded the Cotton as the “Shamrock of 1913,” which exemplifies its luxurious and impressive modernity at the time.
Soon after its opening, the Cotton passed through a series of owners, where its name was eventually changed to the Montagu Hotel. After falling into extreme disrepair, the hotel was demolished on January 20, 2007.