The historic Weatherford Hotel in downtown Flagstaff has experienced gun fights, the 1918 flu, world wars, bankruptcies, hauntings, floods and fires throughout the last 120 years, and its owners say the three-story Moenkopi sandstone Victorian building will survive the coronavirus pandemic, too.
“The Weatherford Hotel stands as a tribute to its early 1900s turn-of-the-century heyday,” said co-owner Henry Taylor. “Its very essence is
resilience and timeless elegance, and COVID-19 will not keep it from honoring the 2020 holiday season with the warmth, beauty and style that residents and visitors have come to expect.”
Owners Henry Taylor and Pamela “Sam” Green are unveiling a new tradition with the Weatherford Irish Coffee Bar, managed by coffee barista extraordinaire Zaq Snodgrass. “We are so excited to bring a unique morning coffee service to the downtown community with a touch of sophistication, while keeping that local Flagstaff charm,” said Snodgrass.
The Irish Coffee Bar is a full-service espresso bar in the Exchange Pub, with specialty coffee favorites like lattes and cappuccinos and also harder Weatherford signature coffee drinks with additions like Irish whiskey and Irish cream. Snodgrass says performance and presentation are part of the experience, with glasses lined up across the polished pine bar and sharply dressed, seasoned baristas performing the morning Irish coffee ritual with precision and grace.
“The Weatherford Hotel is a mainstay attraction in the heart of downtown Flagstaff. They greet thousands of visitors from out of town each year, offering amazing amenities and the ever-popular New Year’s Eve Great Pinecone Drop. This event, along with their local community Monday Night Blues series, has created a true sense of place for downtown,” said City of Flagstaff Economic Vitality Director Heidi Hansen. “The addition of the Irish Coffee Bar will make the historic downtown district even more inviting to locals and visitors as they stroll, shop, dine and sip!”
On the heels of the Irish Coffee Bar opening will be preparations for positioning the Great Pinecone from the hotel’s decorative cupula – a giant holiday ornament three stories above Leroux St. and Aspen Ave.
“This year marks our 22nd anniversary of the Weatherford Hotel’s Great Pinecone tradition,” said Green. “New Year’s Eve celebrations will no doubt look much different this year, but our local symbol of hope and prosperity for the New Year will be perhaps more meaningful than ever before as we ring in 2021.”
Last May marked 45 years of Weatherford Hotel ownership for Taylor. Green joined the hotel 40 years ago, first as a waitress, then as kitchen manager, head bottle washer and whatever other job needed to be done. The two married in 1983 and their daughter, Chelsea, was born in 1984.
“The impact this family has made to the downtown and Flagstaff is astonishing,” said Flagstaff Mayor Coral Evans. “Their massive renovation and historic preservation efforts inside the building and out are just mind-blowing – including returning the grand wrap-around balcony to the second floor, the creation of the beautiful turn-of-the-century-style Zane Grey Ballroom, the restoration of the Exchange Pub façade and the restructuring of the entire basement to fortify the building and create the spacious Gopher Hole. They also invented the Pinecone Drop tradition for our town, which, in normal years, brings thousands of visitors and locals together in one big joyous celebration.”
The Irish Coffee Bar is open 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., Thursdays through Mondays. For more information, visit WeatherfordHotel.com. FBN
By Bonnie Stevens, FBN