Yesterday, the Register broke the "news" that the Evangeline Hotel (1906) at 421 8th St., (a.k.a. The Colonial Inn hostel), had been purchased. The timing of the story puzzled me and other O.C. historians who heard about it closing escrow over a month ago.
Regardless of the timing, this is good news. The Evangeline was in immediate danger of being torn down before these buyers came along. Now it seems the building will be restored and put to some good use.
There aren't many buildings left from H.B.'s pre-oil years, and the Evangeline is one of the most historically interesting. For instance: Among its earliest guest were Civil War vets attending the Grand Army of the Republic conventions at the old H.B. Methodist Campground. (The photo above shows some of these men and their family members on the porch of the hotel.)
The Evangeline has craftsman lines, a redwood frame, and still features a large carriage barn in back. On the front curb you'll still find metal rings to tether your horse.
Rumors for the future include conversion to a bed and breakfast, a woman’s retreat, or simply a humongous house. Personally, I'll be happy with almost any re-use that involves a responsible restoration of the building.
Link: Register article