Courtesy of the historic Strater Hotel archives
1926 – 1983
In 1926, a group of Durango businessmen led by Earl A. Barker, Sr. formed an organization to buy the aging Strater Hotel and focused on refreshing the property. Many famous people have stayed in Durango at the Strater Hotel. Western author Louis L’Amour always asked for the room directly above the Diamond Belle Saloon: Room 222. John F. Kennedy gave a speech at the Colorado State convention in The Strater. Other famous guests include President Gerald Ford, The Grateful Dead, and more!
In their quest to restore and continue the greatness of The Strater, Jentra and Earl Barker, Jr. collected American Victorian-era walnut furniture – which is now one of the largest collections in the world.
1983 – Today
The Strater Hotel’s renovation and its antique collection continued from 1983 under the direction and design of Strater President Roderick E. Barker, the son of Earl and Jentra, and continued the grand tradition of historic Durango, Colorado. Beautiful, hand-printed Bradbury and Bradbury wallpapers and historical shadow boxes are located throughout the hotel and restaurants/bars.
Intricate woodwork and the antiques make The Strater a living history museum, and Durango a place where one can step back into the history of the Old West enjoyed by guests and locals alike.