In 2017, 1899 House Bed & Breakfast celebrates its 118th year. Originally called the Edward Louis Powell house, it was designed by famed builder and architect, Loren Rand and constructed in 1899. Its business name is the "1899 House Bed & Breakfast".
The house was built in a “restrained Queen Anne” style, for Spokane’s tenth mayor and his wife Dora, after he was no longer in office (he was a single-term mayor, as most are, from 1893-4). Its designer was then-well-known master architect, Loren Rand, who had designed many preeminent buildings throughout Spokane after the great fire of 1889, such as Lewis & Clark High School and the Masonic Temple. Their five children were born and raised in the home, and it remained in the family until the 1950’s.
In 1954 it was sold out-of-family and converted to six apartments, very common in that day, with soldiers returning from WWII and Korea. When Louie Flores purchased it in November of 2002, his first rehabilitative efforts focused on removing massive amounts of items left behind by 50 years of tenants and restoring its interior to a single family home; then removing 105 years of roofing materials, including the original cedar shingles. The furnace and air conditioning systems were also updated, making this the only historic bed and breakfast in Spokane with both central air and heat. He also worked to have the house placed on both the national and local registries of historic places.
By 2009, the exterior was cleaned and ready to repaint, and the historic original color scheme had been approved. The interior was restored to four second-floor bedrooms, three with private baths, but needed floors and walls restored. The third floor’s one-bedroom apartment was also roughed-in, and holds the original claw-footed, cast iron tub. Gillian and Louie began renovating the second floor’s first suite, the Dora Room, in 2010, and opened to Bed & Breakfast guests in December of 2012; the Rigby Room followed in October of 2013, and use of the newly-restored Community Room, with its mid-century Kenmore kitchen, was added for guests’ convenience as well.
Renovations continue to the present day, with work inside shifting to the first floor’s west parlor and bath; and the main kitchen update is rising in priority. On the exterior, the entire building is primed; the west side was caulked and painted in 2013-14. The west porch entry has been completely rebuilt, and final paint also done by the end of 2014. The east side patio and garden have been worked on with fountain and seating restored to use. The south face front porch railings and columns were rebuilt in 2013, and thanks to our winning a Heritage Grant from the Spokane Preservation Advocates in November of 2013, the front entry steps and third floor's horseshoe balcony and front porch railings, columns and pedestals were restored by Vance and Steve from "A Painter's Touch". They also did the construction of the west guest entry porch, working with Architect Esteban Vallejo's design. That entry's Victorian paint was completed, thanks to Rebecca Trainor's talents. The PT team returned in July of 2015 and finished the front!
As with any house of this vintage, much work goes on that no one ever gets to see, especially if it is also converted for business use. There have been some steep learning curves, and we are grateful to our many friends and mentors, as well as our families and our guests, for their advice, constructive criticism, patience and moral support!
In our 116th birthday year, we have three years of business experience, a professional logo, advertising on a variety of sites (and television spots), and now manage, our own website. We continue to learn much about our talents and our limitations as well as about what’s worth our personal Team focus and energy, and what’s better left to professionals. As 2015 comes to an end, we gaze with delight at what President Carter coined “sweat equity”.. ..we’ve done it ‘in spades’--and we're not done yet! Please visit our site(s) often, and see what we’re up to! If you’re in Spokane and need a place to stay, take in our virtual tour, choose a suite, and let our home be your castle too, for a while!
Stay in our cozy and affordable bed and breakfast the next time you're in Spokane.
Call now to book your suite: