Renovation work on the shuttered Goldfield Hotel began over the summer and plans to open parts of the landmark building in Goldfield are moving forward.
Red Roberts, owner of the hotel at Columbia Avenue and U.S. Highway 95 in Goldfield, confirmed that he’s started work on the basement and the first two floors of the hotel, with a foreseeable opening for some parts of the historic building in 18 months, he said.
The four-story hotel with 150 rooms has laid dormant to paying guests for more than 70 years.
Family and officers stationed at the Tonopah Air Field during World War II were the last ones to formally take up lodging there, but legends of paranormal activity and other various reasons have attracted ghost hunters and curious parties to the building over the years.
Nicole Shrider, who has helped with some of the cleanup at the hotel, said that was the hard part.
“It really was,” Shrider said. “One hundred years of dirt.”
Shrider said six months of concrete work was to start at the property in August.
“That’s the structural part of it,” she said.
Shrider said there is still plumbing and electrical work to be done on the property.
More than a century old
The hotel was christened in 1907 when champagne reportedly poured down the front steps.
The town of Goldfield boomed in 1902 after prospectors discovered gold in the region. Over the next several years, thousands would move to the region.
By the end of 1906, the population had swelled to about 30,000 and was briefly Nevada’s largest city, according to a collection from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas: “Southern Nevada: The Boomtown Years.”
From 1906 to 1907, more than $15 million in gold ore was mined in the area. When Goldfield Consolidated Mining Co., at one time one of the largest mining concerns in Nevada, shut down in 1918, it had a total estimated production of $125 million.
Population, however, had dropped off years earlier. By 1910, the population in the region had fallen to 5,000. Today, it has fallen to below 500.
During the boom, the Goldfield Hotel was built for a “staggering cost” of $450,000 in 1908, according to the UNLV report.
The Goldfield Hotel was a replacement for another hotel that burned down a year earlier and was designed by architect George E. Holesworth. It became the largest building in town.
A look inside
Half of the 150 rooms sported private baths and the lobby was lined with mahogany. Special chefs served high-end meals such as oysters, lobster, quail and squid at the property’s main restaurant, the UNLV report said.
The hotel has changed hands many times.
Ghost hunters and paranormal enthusiasts have coveted visiting the spot over the years. The property was featured on Fox Family TV’s “Scariest Places” and featured on “Ghost Hunters,” which aired on SyFy (previously the Sci Fi Channel) until 2016.
At this point, Roberts hasn’t revealed any design details for the property or how to book a room in the future.
He did, however, purchase multiple land parcels during the annual land auction in Goldfield, held during Goldfield Days in early August. Two of those properties were adjacent to his Goldfield Hotel that he purchased at a land auction in 2003, Esmeralda County records show.
Those two parcels ran Roberts $16,000.
During the 2017 Goldfield Days, Roberts also donated all Goldfield Hotel’s interior doors, which were also put up for auction. Proceeds went to Radio Goldfield/KGFN 89.1 FM and the Goldfield Historical Society.
At that time, bidders offered upward of $75 per door, and some went for even more.
Not all the doors were auctioned and are available by contacting Carl Brownfield at Radio Goldfield at 775-785-9923, or at 702-241-1901.
Hardware for the doors can be purchased at the Goldfield Art and Business Services shop at 306 Crook Ave. and ask for Sharon Artlip.
Contact reporter Jeffrey Meehan at firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter: @pvtimes