The Anniston City Council recently voted to give the historic Victoria Inn to Alabama Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, free of charge.
The city council voted to transfer the downtown hotel to Senator Marsh's company, Marsh Properties. The agreement stipulates that Marsh Properties must spend at least $1.5 million to renovate the 19th century building, and that it must continue operations as a hotel for at least 15 years.
Marsh says he and his wife are both extremely excited about the opportunity to renovate the historic structure, and that he plans to spend “whatever it takes” to restore the property. Plans for renovation include renaming the hotel to Hotel Finial, after the iconic finial on top of the main house. Marsh plans to keep the exterior of the building largely unchanged, but says he'll bring a new contemporary look to the building's interior.
The Victoria Inn is currently the only hotel in Anniston. The building was constructed in 1888 and was home to multiple Anniston families before it was converted into a hotel and restaurant in 1985. The property was briefly owned by Jacksonville State University, before they sold it to the city of Anniston in 2013.
Marsh aims to complete the renovations by February 2016.