Lower Downtown Walking Tour
The Oxford Hotel, built in 1891, is Denver's Oldest Hotel. Bankrolled by Brewer Adolph Zang and his partners Philip Feldhauser and William Mygatt, the hotel was designed by Denver's greatest 19th century architect, Frank E. Edbrooke. Through the years, its red brick battlements and terra cotta facade have presided over the comings and goings of Presidents and Queens, scalawags and common laborers. The Oxford's first rooms were advertised as elegant yet affordable, located within a half block of Union Station, a room was one dollar, or two dollars for a room with a bath. The hotel weathered the 1893 depression and silver crash to open a two-story brick addition on Wazee Street in 1903. A major addition came in 1912 with the Oxford Annex on 17th Street, designed by Montana Fallis and Robert Willison. Its lavishly decorated terra cotta facade incorporates elements of neoclassical style which contrasts with the hotel's Romanesque design. The proprietors of the Oxford - Hamilton Brooks Company - purchased the land from Struby-Estabrook Mercantile Company and left their mark with the "HB" monogram above the First Floor. Major alterations in the Hotel occurred primarily in the interior, as the magnificent stained glass windows and Dining rooms were installed in 1906, followed by the art deco cruise room bar with its Bas Relief panels in 1935. After 60 years of prominence, the Oxford's fortunes tumbled after 1945, as the railways waned and the neighborhood declined only to be restored to its former glory for a grand reopening in June 1983.