Houston, TX – November 10, 2016 . . . Houston’s historic Lancaster Hotel will celebrate its 90th anniversary at the Houston Symphony Friday, November 11 with a pre-concert reception that includes an appearance by Houston Symphony Pops conductor Michael Krajewski, birthday cake and a nod to the evening’s performance of George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” at Jones Hall for the Performing Arts. The hallmark Jazz Age music composition, written in 1924, promises to be a highlight of the evening’s “I Love A Piano” program starring acclaimed singer/pianist Tony DeSare.
“The Lancaster shares its 90th anniversary year and celebration with another Houston institution and the Houston Symphony’s official airline, United Airlines, which is also supporting “I Love a Piano” this weekend,” said Charles M. (Charlie) Lusk, president of The Lancaster and great grandson of the hotel’s founder, Michele DeGeorge.
The award-winning 93-room boutique property opened Sunday, November 21, 1926 as the 200-room Auditorium Hotel across the street from its namesake City Auditorium. It is where Jones Hall stands today and also where Mark Hanson and the Houston Symphony Society will host its milestone 90th celebration. The hotel, designated a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1984, was accepted more recently into the prestigious Historic Hotels of America as a “Jazz Age”-era hotel.
According to Mark C. Hanson, Houston Symphony Executive Director/CEO, The Lancaster Hotel serves as a partner, housing hosts of guest conductors and artists
over the years, including Garrison Keillor, Bernadette Peters and Matthew Morrison, to name a few.
The hotel’s early guests included vaudeville players from the nearby Majestic and Palace theaters, and dancers from the Ballet Russe who performed across the street. Through the decades the Theater District Houston-area hotel provided lodging for business travelers, performing artists, rodeo cowboys, wrestlers, boxers and long-term residents. During World War II, its basement served as the Stage Canteen where such luminaries as legendary singing cowboy Gene Autry, who rode his horse, Champ, down the stairs, entertained soldiers. In 1977 the hotel was tagged the “Concord Hotel” for the film, “Bad News Bears in Breaking Training.” Other notable guests have included actors Clark Gable, John Voight, Robert Duvall, Carol Burnett, Bette Midler and Hal Holbrook and opera composer Carlisle Floyd, who celebrated his 90th birthday at The Lancaster earlier this year.
In 1982, the Auditorium Hotel was renamed The Lancaster and, after extensive remodeling, became Houston’s first boutique hotel. It is owned and operated by five of DeGeorge’s great grandchildren: Charlie Lusk and siblings Charlene Lusk Dwyer, Miki Lusk Norton, Annette Lusk Segura and James Lusk, and is the oldest continuously operating hotel in Houston.
In honor of its landmark 90th anniversary, the hotel is offering a $90* Sunday night guest room rate through Sunday, November 27, 2016. In addition, the hotel will offer a three-course Sunday night dinner for two at The Bistro Restaurant for $90 during this same time frame.