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Historic building in Washington to be transformed into Boutique Hotel

Posted at 12:52 AM, Oct 13, 2023

WASHINGTON, La. — The historic building nestled at the corner of Main Street and Carriere Street will be preserved by local architect Stephen Ortego.

The 19th-century building once served as a home and general store for Jewish merchants. Today, it remains a pivotal piece of history in Washington, and Ortego, owner and founder of SO Studio Architecture, plans to restore that history.

"We are excited to be a part of one of the most historic places in Louisiana here in Washington," said Ortego.

Ortego says the building carries a rich profile that needs to be displayed to past, present, and future generations.

"This building was originally built in 1870, with a few additions up until around 1909; so it was right after the Civil War it was built here in Washington, and it was a boom town because it was a steamboat town," said Ortego.

Passionate about the building's history, Ortego is on a journey to keep it alive while giving the public an unforgettable experience.

"This building will be restored into a 9-room boutique hotel so that people can come and experience a major part of Louisiana and the history and stay in that part of history," said Ortego.

The boutique hotel will also feature a bridal suite and cocktail pool.

The building is going through a rehabilitation process, and layers are being pulled down, exposing the walls, walls that reveal the steamboat and railroad periods.

"So this is a project that follows the National Park Service guidelines so that it will be done to an almost museum-quality rehabilitation of the building," said Oretgo.

The project is something Oretgo believes will be more than just a place to relax.

"It will be perfect for people to stay as a staycation, or if family coming into the area and really experience history and almost feel like you are traveling back into the steamboat era of Washingston Lousiana," said Oretgo.

He hopes the community and tourists will create more than just a physical bond.

"I want people to feel as if they arrived back home, even if they never lived or been here. In our collective memories, such a huge part of Louisiana history that I believe people come to Washington and feel that they have reconnected with their past," said Ortego.

The preservation is expected to be completed in mid-2024.