La Salle Hotel

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Occupying a prominent corner in the southern end of Bryan's central business district, the La Salle hotel is an architectural landmark representative of the city's early 20th-century commercial development. At that time, Bryan was a major railroad stop between Houston and Dallas, and its depot on the Houston and Texas Central rail line (now demolished) once stood across Main Street from the La Salle. Completed in 1928 for leading businessman Robert Wistar Howell (1877-1960), the La Salle Hotel was the tallest building in downtown Bryan at the time of its construction. Austin architect George Louis Walling designed the seven-story building with Classical details and a distinctly vertical emphasis. The first floor included the dining room and coffee shop, while the convention hall and ballroom were located on the second floor. Roughly 100 guest rooms occupied the top five floors. The La Salle accommodated visitors to Bryan and nearby College Station, including families, politicians, society figures, business travelers and military personnel. The building served as a nursing home from 1959 until 1975 and was closed for the last two decades of the 20th century. Following a rehabilitation project, the La Salle returned to its historic use as a downtown hotel in 2000. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 2001

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