Little Rock, Arkansas Hotels

Empress Hotel, Little Rock, Arkansas

Empress Hotel, Little Rock, Arkansas

The Hornibrook Mansion was completed in 1888. Designed by Max Orlopp and Casper Kusener, it has been described in the National Register of Historic Places as the best example of ornate Victorian Architecture in Arkansas and the most important existing example of Gothic Queen Anne style regionally. Its significance lies in the architectural features (divided stairway, 3 1/2 story corner tower, stained glass skylight, and octagonal shaped rooms), which create a massive structure representing late-nineteenth century architecture in its most flamboyant style.

In 1897, the Hornibrook Mansion became the Arkansas Women's College, the state's first. Between the Depression and the early 1940's the house stood vacant and became a nursing home in 1948. It was a private residence and apartments until 1994 when it was restored to become The Empress.

In May 1994, with demolition complete, estimates were ready and restoration began. Working closely with the Arkansas Department of Historic Preservation and the Quapaw Quarter Historic District, the drawings were approved to bring the house back to the original floor plan, creating five bedrooms and a master suite, where originally there had been 3 large bedroom parlor suites, 3 bathrooms and 2 small bedrooms. The kitchen was restored to its original location, as well as the butler's pantry. The back stairs, and cloak hall were reestablished and a 1/2 bath was added. Sidewalks were re-laid, granite anchored, fence leveled, trees removed, foundation tuck pointed, obsolete concrete structures from the 40's removed from the back, and the rotted 200 ft. porch replaced with tongue and groove cypress, along with new balusters and railings. The triple corbelled chimneys were restored to original height and the 108 yr. old slate roof returned to a good state of repair.

The Empress of Little Rock
2120 S Louisiana Street
Little Rock, AR 72206 US
Empress Hotel, Little Rock AR


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