Located in an accurately restored building that was completed in 1898, at the height of the Cripple Creek gold rush, the historic St Nicholas Hotel is a magnificent example of old Western architecture, where memories of the past seem to come alive.
The building where the hotel functions today was designed and built under the supervision of John Huddart, a well-known architect from Denver, who was the father of many of the most iconic buildings of the Mile High City. The original destination of the building was a hospital and social work establishment run by the Sisters of Mercy Catholic order. The nuns came to the booming Cripple Creek in 1894, under the leadership of Sister Mary Claver Coleman.
The Sisters of Mercy came to Cripple Creek to care for the town’s many poor and ill. They originally built a wooden building that was destroyed during a devastating fire that affected much of Cripple Creek. The nuns decided that they need a safer, modern structure where they can cater for the needs of sick and poor. The newly built hospital was modern and well equipped for its time, being fitted with electric lighting and hot and cold running water.
As the gold deposits were exhausted, Cripple Creek gradually decayed and its population plummeted. In 1924, the sisters left the city, where their work was no longer needed. The hospital building served for various roles, from private medical cabinets to boarding home. In 1995, the building was purchased by an investor, who began a meticulous process of restoration and refurbishment.
After restoration, the St Nicholas building become one of Cripple Creek’s finest hotels. Visitors can stay in one of the 15 uniquely decorated guest rooms, or even in a restored turn-of-the-century miner’s cottage. The hotel’s design maintains elements of the original decoration and architecture, while offering all the modern facilities that guests expect in a high-class hotel.
The bar of the hotel, known as the Boiler Room Tavern, is built around the original 1000-pound boiler that was built in 1895 to provide central heating and hot water to the hospital. The visitors who are interested to find more about the heritage of the building can admire some of the original photographs that depict Little Creek during its heyday. For those who are not scared, the hotel is said to host a few friendly ghosts that sometimes play tricks on the guests.
Visit the historic St Nicholas hotel in Cripple Creek, to enjoy the charm of a bygone era and to relax in the finest conditions.