Byron Hot Springs was a hotel resort and retreat in Byron, California, USA and was well known as a place of sanctuary for movie stars and athletes in the early 1900s.
The first hotel was built by the Mead family in 1889 along with some outbuildings and cottages. The location offered good access to the salt springs however it was destroyed in a fire in 1901. A second hotel was built in 1902 but was again destroyed by fire in 1912. The modern structure was built in 1913 and still stands today, however the building has seen a variety of different uses over time.
In the early part of the 20th century, Byron Hot Springs attracted many of California’s rich and famous, enticed by the hot sulpher springs and the natural mineral waters. Much like the Imperial Baths in Sharon Springs, New York, the upper classes came from the San Francisco Bay area, as well as Los Angeles, for a peaceful retreat.
The resort closed in 1938 following the great depression and the death of found Lewis Mead. It was taken over by the government as a World War II prisoner of war camp for Japanese and German prisoners during World War II, at which point it was renamed Camp Tracy. The camp was renowned for the modern philosophy behind how its prisoners were kept. They were well looked after and given plenty of food and access to the hot springs. It was shut down in 1945 at the end of the war.
The Greek Orthodox Church bought the property in 1947 and used it as a monastery with the new name Mission St. Paul. It remained in this guise until 1956 when it was closed. Byron Hot Springs began to change hands a number of times in the following years and despite a period when it reopened again as a health retreat, it closed again in 2000 and has been abandoned ever since.
Stonecrest Investment Group now own the facility and have plans for a new development to return it to its former glory. These can be found at http://www.byronhotsprings.com
Location: Byron, California, USA
The pictures above are with thanks to rhmimages.blogspot.ie