About this exhibition
Museum Exhibition Dates: May 17 – Sept 12, 2019
Exhibition Locations: Museum of the White Mountains, Main Gallery
Opening reception: May 17, 5-7pm
Curatorial Team: Bryant F. Tolles, Cynthia Robinson
Join us to explore The Grand Hotels of the White Mountains, featuring the origins, development, and history of New Hampshire’s grand resort hotels. The creative visual journey includes paintings, photographs, various artifacts, and stories of the people who visited and worked at these gracious establishments. Special focus for the exhibition are the four surviving hotels: the Omni Mount Washington Resort, Mountain View Grand Resort & Spa, Eagle Mountain House & Golf Club, and The Wentworth Hotel.
“Last summer we celebrated the White Mountain National Forest, and this year we are thrilled to bring to life the rich history of the grand hotels that sprung up throughout the region in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, drawing the nation’s wealthiest families to New Hampshire,” said Cynthia Robinson, Director of the Museum of the White Mountains. “Entering the exhibit, one is transported to another time, and can experience the ‘grand hotel’ through the eyes of a guest, or perhaps a hotel worker, while learning the history of the grand hotel period and its significance to our state.”
During the golden age of the Grand Resort Hotels in the White Mountain region, between 1880 and 1910, there were approximately 30 hotels that could be considered “Grand,” meaning those that provided room for 200 guests, with elegantly styled dining rooms, parlors, and lobby spaces, incorporating recreation activities and events targeting an elite class of tourists. These gracious establishments cultivated exclusive worlds apart where the honored guests could truly re-create themselves. The exhibit also illuminates New Hampshire’s White Mountains as a case study for the American Plan hospitality model, where patrons paid one price for room, meals, activities and amenities – the precursor to today’s ‘all inclusive’ model.
The exhibit also includes video reflections of people who are intimately familiar with the Grand Hotels through a special partnership with New Hampshire Public Television.
Grand Hotels Summer 2019 Speaker Series
Special series of related lectures by guest historians and experts. The full Speaker Series presentations are recorded and made available online.
This speaker series is presented with support from MWM membership.