The 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa in Eureka Springs, Arkansas is pleased to announce that Elise Roenigk is the winner of the Historic Hotels of America Lifetime Achievement Award, an honor that was presented to her at the 2022 Historic Hotels of America Annual Awards of Excellence Ceremony and Gala Dinner at the Grand Hotel Golf Resort & Spa in Point Clear, Alabama, on Thursday, November 17, 2022. Awards were presented to recipients before an audience of owners, senior management, industry leaders, and representatives from the finest historic hotels worldwide. Elise was joined by her brother and sister-in-law, Rick & Iris Feutz, and several members of her hotel family.
The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to an individual whose lifelong passion has resulted in the preservation of a significant historic hotel and the stewardship and celebration of the history and stories of a legendary historic hotel.
“We are delighted to recognize and honor Elise Roenigk, owner of the 1886 Crescent Hotel, with the 2022 Historic Hotels of America Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Lawrence Horwitz, Executive Vice President, Historic Hotels of America and Historic Hotels Worldwide. “The commitment of Elise and her late husband to the preservation and restoration of several significant historic buildings, including the 1886 Crescent Hotel, has resulted in an increase in local tourism, a significant contribution to the local economy over many decades, and the preservation of a very iconic historic hotel.”
In 1996, Elise and her husband stopped in Eureka Springs, Arkansas while visiting nearby Fayetteville from their home in Connecticut. Charmed by the historic buildings in the area, the couple purchased the tallest building in Eureka Springs, the downtown Basin Park Hotel, with the idea of semi-retirement and converting the sixth and seventh floors into a bi-level apartment and display area for their mechanical music collection.
Three months later, when the 1886 Crescent Hotel became available for sale, the couple bought it and shifted plans, moving instead to what would become the restored skyline of the landmark. Standing on her philosophy of “Old buildings should be repurposed and restored. There is always a solution and alternative to demolishing or abandoning our character and history” Elise provided steady guidance on efforts to protect the irreplaceable hotel and reclaim its status as Arkansas’ Symbol of Hospitality.
Elise has long been a preservationist. From her time living in the historic town of East Hampton, CT, and serving on Middlesex County Historical Society to today, where she remains philanthropically involved in the community through her involvement with such non-profits as The Writers Colony at Dairy Hollow, Eureka Springs School of the Arts (ESSA), and Main Stage Community Center.
About Historic Hotels of America®
Historic Hotels of America® is the official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation for recognizing, celebrating, and promoting the finest historic hotels in the United States of America. To be nominated and selected for membership in this prestigious program, a hotel must be at least 50 years old; designated by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior as a National Historic Landmark, or listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places; and recognized as having historical significance. Of the more than 300 historic hotels inducted into Historic Hotels of America from 44 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, all historic hotels faithfully preserve their sense of authenticity, sense of place, and architectural integrity. For more information, please visit HistoricHotels.org/US.
The Crescent Hotel & Spa was welcomed to the membership of Historic Hotels of America in 1999.