Wigwam Days shows Wigwam Motel #7 in San Bernardino, California. Built in 1949 and consisting of nineteen teepees, this motel is much the same as the one in Holbrook, Arizona. Remarkably, both Wigwams are open for business and you can sleep in a teepee.
The Wigwam motel drew quite the crowd, thanks to its unusual rooms. Composed only of teepees, each teepee is its own room. Inside, the rooms are comfortable, although they are circular. Sleeping in one is always a thrill, and really, when was the last time you slept in a teepee?
This was not the only Wigwam Motel. In fact, there were seven of these motels across the United States, with two of them on Route 66. Originally designed by Frank Redford, the Wigwams were designed to be different than other motels, as well as to reflect his interest in Native American history.
In the mid-1990s this motel was in a state of severe decline and deep jeopardy. It had developed a seedy reputation, so few people wanted to stay there. It seemed that it might finally close its doors because the land was worth more than the buildings. Wigwam Days were coming to an end, it seemed. Kumar Patel, a lifelong fan of Route 66, purchased and faithfully restored the property, once again making it a viable place to stop.
These iconic motels serve not only as a beautiful place to spend the night but also remind us of the glory days of roadside attractions. Wigwam Days are here again.
If you would like to see a wigman at night, you don’t want to miss Wigwam Nights,