The Lodge at Wakulla Springs nominated for best historic hotels in Florida

Published: Jun. 14, 2020 at 10:33 PM EDT
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Emma Wheeler | WCTV Eyewitness News

June 14, 2020

WAKULLA SPRINGS, Fla. (WCTV) -- Travelers in Wakulla Springs are stepping back in time at one of Florida's favorite historic hotels.

The Lodge at Wakulla Springs is nominated as a People's Choice Award for best historic hotels in Florida. The award is presented by the Florida Association of the American Institute of Architecture.

The hotel as built by Edward Ball in the early 1930's. Housekeeping Manager Yvonne Tuten says the famous businessman purchased the land in order to keep it preserved.

The space also served as a political meeting place.

"At one time they wanted to move the Capitol down south, and he got the constituents together. They fought against that and kept it here in Tallahassee," Tuten said. "It's like stepping back in time, when things were a little bit easier."

Ball and his family lived in the now 27 bed hotel. The rooms are furnished with all original and antique furniture. There is only one television in the hotel.

Hotel staff the flooring all comes from a quarry Ball purchased in Tennessee. He had the quarry closed afterwards, so the stone couldn't be used any where else.

Sales Director Michelle Laxton-Lewis and her family have been coming to the Lodge for generations, and has now worked at the hotel for thirteen years.

She says it gives guests a sense of home.

"We still have some of Edward Ball's favorite foods on our menu. I want people to know that buildings like this still exist," Laxton-Lewis said. "You feel like you're home here."

The hotel is one of 28 People's Choice nominees. Voting will be open through July 10.

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