Top Ten Historic Hotels

The Mission Inn, Riverside, California
The Mission Inn, Riverside, California
HONEYMOON SUITE: The grandiose Mission Inn is home to many famous honeymooners, including Ronald and Nancy Reagan (The Mission Inn)

4. The Mission Inn, Riverside, California
With flying buttresses, turrets, towers, and plenty of Mediterranean and southwest mission-style influence, The Mission Inn is a feast for the senses. Located near the intersection of California Highways 60 and 91, and 20 minutes from the Ontario Airport, the hotel takes up a full city block and is a grand maze of domes, towers, fountains, and bougainvillea-covered wrought-iron staircases and balconies.

The Mission was built between 1876 and 1931 by Frank Miller, a voracious collector of fine art. In the late 1800s, wealthy easterners and Europeans flocked to Riverside in search of a warmer winter climate along with the desire to invest in the area's profitable citrus industry. By the 1890s, Riverside was the richest city per capita in the United States.

The inn features 239 guest rooms (including 28 suites), several atmospheric restaurants with award-winning dining, and the beautiful Spanish Patio. There's also a classic Californian outdoor swimming pool and two wedding chapels. (Ronald and Nancy Reagan honeymooned at the Mission Inn, and Richard and Pat Nixon were married there.)

Rooms can run as low as $179, and each are unique, from Mission Inn-style rooms to presidential suites.

Published: 8 Apr 2010 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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