1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa

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• Discover the rich heritage of the 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa. The first 10 or so years of the hotel’s existence, the “invited guests” would ascend the limestone steps up to the East Garden, be announced, and to rounds of applause would be welcomed by guests and staff members who were hosting a “welcome tea” for the arriving (for the season) guests.

• Marvel at the construction of the hotel itself, a five-story castle, which began to be built in 1884. Irish stonemasons were brought in to cut and dry stack 18-inch thick limestone blocks that were quarried about 10 miles away near the White River and brought to the hotel by horse-drawn wagons. Visitors will notice that due to settling, there is now mortar between the blocks of the 1886 Crescent Hotel but its Victorian architecture has stayed true. Grand opening of the hotel was on May 20, 1886.

• Admire the hotel's unique folklore. The most talked about eras in the hotel building was from 1937 through December of 1939. It was during these years that a charlatan Norman Baker from Muscatine, IA, owned the hotel and turned it into the Baker Cancer Clinic. Much of the hotel’s paranormal “guests” are said to come from this era since Mr. (not Doctor) Baker gave hundreds his “magic” elixir.
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