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Cincinnati: Vernon Manor

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The Vernon Manor, constructed in 1924 and modeled after the Hatfield House in Hertfordshire, England, was one of the premier hotels in Cincinnati, Ohio. Located on one of Cincinnati's famous Seven Hills, the Manor offered an escape from the bustling downtown and riverfront and had a reputation for being "the place to stay" for musicians visiting or performing in the city.

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It's history wasn't always so star-studded. In 1934, the hotel faced the possibility of bankruptcy. The property by 1945 was "run-down-at-the-heels" and was purchased by Walter Schott, a local car dealer. And changing demographics of its neighborhood, along with riots and racial tensions, helped drag down the prestige of the hotel.

But despite it's problems, among those who had booked rooms were The Beetles, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Kenny Chesney and Presidents Kennedy and Johnson. "Rainman," a 1988 film, featured the hotel. The Manor featured large guest suites, gardens and full plumbing that attracted long-term guests.

The hotel was purchased by the Belvedere in 1986, and renovated in 1999. Only ten years later, the Manor closed due to deteriorating market conditions.

One of the first reuse proposals for the hotel called for it to be converted into 100 apartments, and into low-income housing. But Children's Hospital signed a letter of intent to be its sole occupant for up to 17 years, and the hotel would be gutted and re-purposed to house 600 employees that would be transferred from elsewhere on its campus in an effort to consolidate its many office functions into a single location.

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Lobby, which has mostly been stripped of its historic goodness in the 1990s during the renovations.

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The bar, which no longer serves any patrons.

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Kitchen

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Conference rooms

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Typical guest rooms

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Elevator controls

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Click through for an extensive history of the Vernon Manor and its redevelopment, along with over 25 photographs.

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