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Shafter's Green Hotel: The building blocks of a city

Green Hotel
Posted at 10:20 AM, Jan 16, 2024
  • Built in 1913, the Green Hotel stands as the first commercial building to be built in Shafter. The Hotel was used to house prospective land buyers who were surveying the region. The Green Hotel is one of three buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places in Shafter.
  • The video shows some of the storied history of the Hotel under the guidance of Green Hotel volunteer and docent, Dolly Hei. Hei has called Shafter home for over 70 years and has served as a volunteer documenting the history of the hotel for decades.
  • The Green Hotelstopped providing tours and hosting events during the Coronavirus Pandemic but recently re-opened its doors to tours on the first Saturday of each month and started accepting event requests.

Right behind me in 1913, the Green Hotel was built and it was one of the building blocks for the city that many call home.

Dolly Hei has called Shafter home for over 70 years and has volunteered at the Green Hotel for several decades handing off her knowledge to those willing to hear it and she’s continued to do it because she says it’s important to showcase how the city was built and where it started.

“I think it helps people remember what it was then as compared to what it is now and to admire what was accomplished in those days by the earliest farmers and by all who came after in developing a town like this. And the hotel is very much part of that,” said Hei.

While the Green Hotel has a rich history with a board dedicated to preserving it, there’s still and always will be some mysteries that surround it. Hei says, that's just the way it will have to be.

“Absolutely there are, and there may be those who know those — those secrets, but I haven't talked to a lot of them. I don't know certainly don't know it all," said Hei. "By continuing our questioning and listening, we're adding to the knowledge about the place, but it'll never be all known.”

As Hei showed 23ABC around the old hotel, reminders of the past can be seen all around. With some aspects, like electrical wiring that would have powered the building in the early 1900’s, being put on display. For Hei, it’s a way to showcase what life was like back then and see how far society has come since.

“It’s a true example of exactly what the building was like then what what we had to work with and what people did for these conveniences. And its living — they're living examples of that early building.”

Currently, The Green Hotel is open for tours on the first Saturday of every month.

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