The Tremont House is a Galveston tradition that refuses to buckle under pressure. The original Tremont House, built in 1839, was one of the island's most sought-after destinations. Located at the corner Post Offce and Tremont Streets, the sturdy two-story building was the largest and finest hotel in the Republic of Texas.
The Tremont House drew visitors from across the region, America and the world. Elegant Victorians came to dance at grand balls, and soliders from three wars returned to homecoming banquets. Sam Houston delivered his last public speech. Cotton merchants haggled over deals, and Sioux chiefs sampled Southern cuisine. Six American presidents and foreign ministers from France came to call. During the Civil War, Confederate, then Union, soldiers made a home in the hotel.
In Jun 1865, The Tremont House faces its first trial – a great fire that raged in The Strand District for days and destroyed entire city blocks. For more than five years, the beloved landmark, lay in ruins. Then several of the island's business leaders organized a company to build a new hotel on the ashes of the old.
The grand new Tremont House was a magnificent, four-story structure that rivaled anything in the South. Noted architect Nicholas Clayton who designed the hotel, went on to create many of Galveston's most distinguished and beautiful buildings. The second Tremont House opened in 1872 and for years attracted dignitaries from around the world.
In 1900, disaster struck again. A monster hurricane barreled into the Gulf of Mexico and landed a direct hit on the island. As the economy slipped into depression, the once grand hotel fell into ruin. The second Tremont House was demolished in 1928.
Forty-five years later, the legendary hotel rose again in a new location. In 1985, George and Cynthia Mitchell acquired the achitectually lavish Leon & Blum Building and began its transformation into the third Tremont House. Once the South's premier wholesale dry goods firms, the 1879 building is now a remarkable hotel that captures the spirit and elegance of its predecessors. Houston architect Eugene T. Heiner designed this three-story brick structure in an Italianate style. The Mitchells later added the fourth story as part of the renovation.
Standing in the heart of the wonderfully revitalized Strand National Historic Landmark District, The Tremont House is surrounded by shops, galleries, restaurants, lofts, offices and museums tracing the vibrant history of the island.
The Tremont House joined the elite ranks of Wyndham's historic hotels in 1996 and became a member of Historic Hotels of America in 2002.