Tropics Motor Hotel – Phoenix, Arizona

28950727006_6635cff232_b1902 E. Van Buren
Phoenix, Arizona
East Side of Phoenix on Highways 60-70-80-89.
Close to downtown shopping and entertainment, 50 luxurious rooms, coffee shop, dining room, cocktail lounge, heated pool, TV in Room, hot water heat in winter, refrigeration in summer, reasonable rates.

Tropics Motor Hotel opened for business in December 1957 at 1902 E. Van Buren in Phoenix. The motel was built with 50 deluxe units, heated pool, coffee shop and dining room.

The motel was built by Fred B. Jones and family, who operated the motel. The interior was designed by Alfred Beadle with the “luxurious draperies” designed for the motel by Oscar Leverant’s Drapery Ship at 4306 N. Central Ave.

Arizona Republic – December 29, 1957

Although the motor hotel had been open a few months, the grand opening ceremony took place on March 1st and 2nd, 1958.

Arizona Republic – March 1, 1958

Although the motel was quite successful in the beginning, it was the restaurant, cocktail lounge and coffee shop that became a favorite spot for cheap, good food and a nice drink.

View of the Tropics’ bar – Arizona Republic – March 16, 1958

The property lasted until the 1980s as the Tropics. I can find information on it until 1982 and then nothing. The Tropics, like so many others on E. Van Buren Ave., suffered the fast of being on a highway that was by-passed for a freeway. That move caused business to slow on the highway.

The entire area fell on hard times.The tropics appeared to be no different. In 1981, a man was robbed in his room in the Tropics. However, there is more to the story than just that.

Arizona Republic – November 19, 1981

I found a brief  then falling on hard times until the property was closed and eventually torn down. It looks like the Tropics was razed in the early 1990s.


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