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Hotel Bentley

The hotel was built in 1907-1908 by Joseph A. Bentley, prominent lumberman and businessman. Bentley came to Central Louisiana from Pennsylvania to engage in the sawmill business and the cutting of the virgin pine forest which was the first serious economic activity since the devastation of the Civil War and Reconstruction. Architect for the hotel project was George R. Mann of Little Rock and contractor was Hull Construction Company of Jackson, Mississippi. The hotel opened August 10, 1908. In 1936-1937 an eight-story wing fronting Third Street was added. Eugene J. Stern, Inc. of Little Rock was the architect, C. Errol Barron of Alexandria the associate architect, and the contractor was Tudor and Ratcliff Contractors of Alexandria, owned and operated by Simon W. Tudor and J.E. Ratcliff. The new addition opened October 2, 1937. After two closures, the building sat idle for several years. In 1984-1985, a refurbishing and renovation project was conceived by Tudor Companies, funded by Hotel Bentley Partners and Sandia Federal Savings and Loan Association, and completed by Tudor Construction Company. The hotel reopened October 25, 1985.

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