Two More from the Sundowner Motel

There are different reasons I like certain pictures, but this one just tells the whole story.  I like a lot of my Salton Sea pictures, but this sort of sums it up.

These shots are the same motel as the last post, but some different angles.  When I was there in 2000, there was one chunk of a building left, which you can see at the right above, but the sign points to where the motel was.  Now, just a pile of detritus.  If this was a city, they’d at least fence the remains, but this is the Salton Sea.  It just is.

What a great sign though.  I love the electrical wires protruding from the top of the sign.  At some point, someone was up there futzing with things trying to get it all working.  It’s like fiddling while Rome burns.

I’ve got a couple more to post but since this is coming from 12-year-old scanned film (Kodak Max 400 for the curious), there are a lot of scratches and spots I have to clean up and it takes a while.

Welcome to the Thunderbird Motel

Aurora Avenue seems like it probably has a storied past.  These days, the story is urban highway and blighted business districts.  At one time, it seems like everyone decided it would be a great place to build glorious old-timey motels.  Back before the Motel 6s and Holiday Inns, everyone had cool names and even better signs.  At present, most of those places are out of business, but some remain, and better yet, they haven’t torn down the relics quite yet.  I don’t think they’ll last long, so this will be the first in a series of what is left.  All of these are on Aurora Ave N (State Route 99) north of downtown Seattle.  First up, the Thunderbird Motel.

thunderbird motel, aka fremont inn

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Most recently, this place was actually called the Fremont Inn, but I’ll defer to the huge neon thunderbird.  This was actually one of the first of the motels to be forcibly shut down under the nuisance laws.  I can’t say I’m sad that it isn’t up and running but I hope they turn it into something worthwhile instead of just another vacant lot or hole in the ground.

I think it’s safe to say, this place has seen better days.

Thunderbird Motel, fenced and vacant