Ross Hotel On Market For First Time In Over 40 Years

Thursday, August 08, 2013

The Ross Hotel at Patten Parkway is on the market for the first time in over 40 years.

Realtor Ralph Paty Jr., whose family has owned the hotel along with the rest of the block all that time, said it has been drawing widespread interest.

"I'm showing it almost every day. We have a lot of local developers want to see it as well as some out-of-town ones."

Mr. Paty said the brick building has not been a hotel since 1979 and needs plenty of work, but he said it is basically in sound condition with a good roof. He said, "It's got many interesting features from the "maid's sinks" in the hallways to a wide atrium and some unique corner rooms. The ceilings are about 15 feet high. A lot of the old clawfoot tubs are still in place. Most of the original walls and floors are still in place."

He said there is a full basement with its own fascinations, including a kitchen and a barber shop with the barber chairs still in place.

The atrium area is a curiosity because it is possible to look down from the upper floors and see a sloped roof line below.

The lobby was on the left side of the building and it has a full-size elevator that has not been called into service for many years.

The entrance closest to Patten Parkway was long Edmund's Restaurant and later was Yesterday's and then Midtown Music Hall.

Mr. Paty noted that his parents, Ralph Paty Sr. and Selma Paty bought the line of brick buildings that date to the first of the last century from Cartter Patten in 1972.

He said Ms. Paty, a prominent local attorney who is still practicing, has a special attachment to the entire block, but is waiting to see what offers are out there.

Mr. Paty said when he was a teenager the family moved into the parkway and he lives there still.

The Ross Hotel opened March 2, 1925, with a full house and with dancing in the ballroom, which was christened "The Grotto". A.W. Lessly was the owner and C.H. Barnes the manager. There were 70 rooms priced at $1.50 per day. There were large bay windows with clear views of Lookout Mountain to the south. The wide corridors on each floor were thickly carpeted. At the west end of each hall was "a fountain of ice water for the convenience of guests on each floor."

The lobby was furnished "as beautifully as the Blackstone in Chicago or the McAlpin in New York." The ballroom on the ground floor was 40 feet wide and 100 feet long. There was also a barber shop and beauty shop.

Not long after the opening, William Jennings Bryan, a presidential candidate who was a key figure in the Scopes Trial in Dayton, was a guest in room 301 at the Ross Hotel on July 25, 1925. He died the next day in Dayton. Later, a Bryan portrait was placed in the hotel lobby.

The building is said to date to Chattanooga's boom days in 1888 and to have long served as a boarding house before it was converted for a hotel.

The Patys decided in 1979 to close the hotel. At the time many of the guests were permanent residents.

Selma Paty later made an effort to convert the facility for upscale apartments, but that project did not materialize.  


 


   

  

 


Planning Commission Recommends Approval for 4-Story St. Elmo Commercial/Residential Building

The Planning Commission on Monday afternoon approved a four-story commercial/residential project near the Incline Railway in St. Elmo. A number of residents of the historic suburb had expressed concern about the height of the building near Mojo Burrito on Old Mountain Road. Paul Teruya, a developer from the Southside, said he had held several meetings with neighbors and ... (click for more)

City To Work With Developers On Utilizing Long-Vacant Infill Lots

The city plans to work with developers to utilize long-vacant lots owned jointly by the city and county, officials said Wednesday. The county is being asked to relinquish its rights to 34 lots. Paul Parker, county real property manager, said the city will be the lead agency in seeking to find developers to use the lots for new construction. The properties would go back ... (click for more)

Haslam Signs Bill Ending Forced Annexation And Giving Tennesseans Right To Vote

Governor Bill Haslam signed HB 2371/SB2464 on Wednesday. The law ends forced annexations and gives Tennesseans the right to vote. The law now requires cities to annex by consent of the landowner or through referendum approved by a majority of the landowners to be annexed. As an additional protection to farmers, land primarily used for agriculture purposes may not be annexed by any ... (click for more)

One Of "Worst Of The Worst" Gets 10-Month Federal Sentence

One of the men labeled as the "worst of the worst" in a Chattanooga roundup was sentenced Tuesday to 10 months and three years supervised release after he pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine. Guy Wilkerson told Federal Judge Sandy Mattice, "I'm just a young father and I want the best for my kids." He said he apologized and that he knew what he ... (click for more)

Time For Tennessee To Act On Climate This Earth Day - And Response

Tennessee will join the rest of the southeast region, the nation and countries across the world in celebrating Earth Day on April 22. The entire month of April is a great time to reflect on the strides we have made to reduce pollution over the last 44 years, and assess current environmental conditions while evaluating our personal responsibility to a cleaner environment.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Why Jim Coppinger Excels

Jim Coppinger, who as the mayor of Hamilton County has understandably had to grow some thick skin, wants no part of the repulsive billboards now seen around town that ask, “Do you have gonorrhea?”  His Tuesday morning telephone call revealed he is just as disgusted as the rest of us who see them showing a picture of a forlorn African-American male. “You need to know the Hamilton ... (click for more)