The Hotel Vandivort, Springfield, Missouri’s first urban boutique hotel, is built in a former Masonic Temple. Giving a nod to the building’s history, the 50-room upscale downtown hotel incorporates Masonic symbolism throughout the building. It also focuses on the local community, displaying works by local artists. In addition, the hotel’s restaurant, The Order, uses locally-sourced food as much as possible.
The building’s history
Built in 1906, the four-story building served as a Masonic Temple for over 75 years, which included a large auditorium on the top floor. In the 1980s the building was transformed to office space and also became home of the Springfield Contemporary Theater and a ballroom. The building’s name changed to the Vandivort Center at that time.Already on the National Record of Historic Places, when building renovations began for the hotel, drywall and drop ceilings that had been installed in the 1980s were torn out, exposing the original brick walls and high ceilings.
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Both the Masonic and the Vandivort pasts are remembered in the hotel. The name, of course, is taken from the days that the building was used as offices and a theater. The cut-out area of the “V” logo shapes a plumb, a tool used by Masons.
During building renovation, a few Masonic artifacts were found. A lobby display showcases those items, along with Vs from old printing presses.
Hotel Vandivort’s local art
Hotel owners, Springfield-native brothers John and Billy McQueary, turned to local artists and artisans for much of the art and light fixtures that decorate the hotel. Springfield Hot Glass hand crafted almost 90 light globes, each one different, that hang in The Order.
Works by a local artisan who turns old objects into lamps are on display in a corner of the lobby referred to as the “library.”
You won’t find books in the “library,” but the space is characteristic of a library with walls of shelving and long communal tables made from wood reclaimed from the 100-year-old building.
Hotel Vandivort rooms
During our two-night visit, we stayed in a Modest King room, hardly modest if you ask me. The room seemed spacious compared to most boutique hotels we’ve stayed in. High ceilings, handmade light fixtures, a roomy bathroom, push button lighting controls, and whimsical touches made the room both elegant and fun. We could even adjust the shades with the touch of a button.I loved the fun Privacy door tags.
Besides the Modest King and Humble Queen rooms, the Hotel Vandivort offers 27 suites, including some with a balcony and some with a kitchenette. If you really want to live it up, the top-floor 1,550 square-foot Master Suite includes a full kitchen, a 325-square foot patio, a fireplace and two bathrooms.
The Order, just as popular with locals as it is with hotel guests, serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Based on the one meal we ate in The Order, I highly recommend it.
Skip ordered his standard bourbon for a cocktail, but I went for one of the fun drinks, the Eastern Star, (the Eastern Star is the female Masonic affiliate), made with Herradura, Grand Marnier, lime juice, prickly pear puree, agave syrup and a sweet heat rim. I didn’t pay attention to the “sweet heat rim” part until I touched my lips to the glass rim. Sugar and cayenne, I think it was, added a punch to the tasty but potent drink.
On to dinner, the first thing we noticed was that the menu lists the suppliers of locally sourced foods. We shared an Urban Greens salad (Urban Roots Farm), mixed greens and spinach, poached figs, golden beets, prosciutto and plum vinaigrette. The staff was kind enough to divide it into two plates for us.
Skip ordered the Seared Blackgate Farms 100% Grassfed Chef’s Cut for his entrée. Neither of us recalls the cut of beef. However, we both remember that it was flavorful and tender. Smoked provolone herb grits, bordelaise sauce and grilled asparagus rounded out the meal nicely.I chose the Braised Pork Belly, Circle B Ranch pork belly with apple mashed potatoes, tri-color carrots and local persimmon jam.
For dessert we couldn’t pass up Chocolate Pot de Crème made with Askinosie Chocolate and Coffee Ethic espresso. As soon as I saw the name Askinosie on the dessert menu, I knew what we were ordering. Askinosie, a local bean-to-bar renowned chocolatier, produces the richest chocolate I have ever tasted. The pot de crème was one of the most decadent desserts ever.
If you go
The Hotel Vandivort, located at 305 E Walnut Street in Downtown Springfield, Missouri, is within walking distance of shopping, theaters and nightlife. Check rates and reviews on TripAdvisor.
Disclosures: Our visit to Springfield, Missouri, was hosted by the Springfield Missouri Convention and Visitors Bureau and our stay at the Hotel Vandivort was complimentary, but any opinions expressed in this post are my own.
This article contains an affiliate link. If you book a room through the TripAdvisor link above, I will receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you.
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3 thoughts on “Hotel Vandivort: Local History, Art, Food”
This looks and sounds like such a great place to stay! I love staying in a place that has a story, and boy does this one have that! Love the idea of the artifacts showcased!
The way they incorporated the history of the building into the hotel really makes it special.
Truly a boutique hotel with its history ensconced in every detail. Would love a chance to stay there!