Wirth Watching: The Demolition of the Hotel Newhouse

Published 08/31 2014 08:48PM

Updated 08/31 2014 10:51PM

SALT LAKE CITY (Good 4 Utah) - It was built to grace Salt Lake City in 1915. Its 12 stories of rooms crowned a lobby famous for a split staircase that led to French-style ballrooms.  But in 1983 the Hotel Newhouse came tumbling down.

They never looked better than for New Year’s Eve parties.

It was home to Dr. Robert Sutton whose dad ran and partly owned the place.

“I lived there 35 years,” said Dr. Sutton in 1983. “I thought it was normal. It was home.”

But by 1983, it was a little rough around the edges and it was time to say Auld Lang Syne.

A wrecking crew cut supports and beams and tore out the French- style ballroom, leaving a ghost of elegance to fall in the demolition.

Workers cut holes in the dining room to fill the beams with dynamite for desert.

Now, you don’t let a building like this be blown up without notice.

Utahans grabbed front row seats all around the place.

Then countdown started.

The charges went off one at a time.

Project manager John Henry said indeed the last party in the ballroom was a blast.

“I’m really happy it’s over,” said Henry in 1983. “Lots of tension”.

It was a big deal to any whoever were in the hotel, except for the demolition expert, to whom it was only gravity at work

--Craig Wirth

Copyright 2015 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Sponsored by:

Featured Coupon


Featured Business