St. Francis Hotel, Albany
- Location: 406 First Ave W, Albany
- Built: 1912
- Architect: Charles Burggraf
- Designation:National Register of Historic Places
- Significance: The St. Francis is a primary resource in the Albany Downtown Commercial Historic District. Historically, the hotel served as a center of social activity for locals and travelers alike; the restaurant was said to be a “Sunday ritual” known well beyond Linn County.
News and Updates
Reuse study being used as basis for community dialogue on financing and executing hotel reuse
June 24, 2013
Conceptual Reuse Study prepared for St. Francis Hotel
April 10, 2013
Restore Oregon awards $2,500 grant towards a building re-use study.
February 9, 2013
Restore Oregon presents “How to Save an Endangered Place.” to provide community with tools to advocate for rehab.
May 29, 2012:
On the endangered list Outlet: Democrat Herald
May 23, 2012:
Albany Hotel is on Oregon’s Most Endangered Places List – VIDEO
Outlet: KEZI News
The St. Francis Hotel building was designed and built by Albany architect Charles Burggraf in 1912. Burggraf is well-known in the Willamette Valley for designing such buildings as Waldo Hall and Education Hall at Oregon State University, and the Albany Civic Theater, First Savings Bank, and Dawson House in Albany.
According to Rosalind Clark’s seminal Architecture Oregon Style:
“This small town version of the Chicago school style exhibits the characterizing three-part windows, flat roof, steel-frame skeleton, brick façade and minimal historic detail. Charles Burggraf designed it for William Rhodes and spent $60,000 to build it. Wooden panels now cover the large tran¬som windows on the first floor. The hotel, advertised as operating on the European Plan, charged fifty cents a night for each of its sixty rooms. For the same prices, a guest could eat a large meal in the el¬egant dining room.”
Why is it Endangered?
Since their heyday in the early 1900s, eight of Albany’s downtown hotel buildings have succumbed to the wrecking ball; the St. Francis stands as the lone reminder of the hotels that housed visitors from across Oregon to Albany.
Although the ground floor is still in use as a print shop, the upper floors of the hotel are unoccupied despite the high-degree of interior integrity. Plans for low-income housing and a boutique hotel have been hatched, but immediate weatherization and preservation planning are needed for the building to be preserved, upgraded, and put back into service.