Minuet Manor Motel & Restaurant – Altoona, Pennsylvania

I’m back! After a very prolonged absence to due a dog bite, a kidney stone, travel and working on some other exciting projects I am ready to get back to it!

Located on Route 220 between Altoona and Tyrone, Pennsylvania, the Minuet Manor Motel and Restaurant opened in the mid-late 1950s (cannot find an exact date). Offering 79 comfortable rooms and a nice meal, the Minuet was a popular spot for local civic and sorority gathers. The restaurant was not just an ordinary eating spot – there’s something of a twist.

1960-03-29 - Tyrone Daily Herald, 29 Mar 1960, Tue, Page 6
Tyrone Daily Herald, March 29, 1960

The restaurant featured a large collection of pepper mills. According to the verso of the postcard below, The Minuet Manor featured the:

World’s largest collection of unique pepper mills, ranging in size for 3 inches to 7 feet 6-inches. Just one of the many memorable pleasures in store for you at the Minuet Manor is being served freshly ground pepper from this outstanding collection.

MM
Late 1960s postcard showcasing some of the unusual pepper mills inside the restaurant

The restaurant

MM2
Another postcard view of the pepper mills

The restaurant and motel were a hit throughout the 1960s. Struggling to stay afloat after the gas crisis and a dramatic shift in traveling and dining culture, the Minuet Manor was sold to Arthur and Mary Beth Mittelmark in 1977.

1977-11-02 - Tyrone Daily Herald, 02 Nov 1977, Wed, Page 7
Tyrone Daily Herald – November 2, 1977

With the 1980s and 1990s came hard times for the venerable motel and restaurant. The best I can figure is the restaurant closed sometime in 1980s or 1990s. I may be wrong and if I am please correct me!

In July 1999 six people were arrested at the motel in the largest heroin bust in Blair County (PA) history.

Tyrone Daily Herald,  07 Jul 1999, Wed,  Page 11.jpg
Tyrone Daily Herald – July 7, 1999

The motel underwent new ownership around 2000. The new group cleaned the place up and, according to an ad in the classified section of the Altoona Mirror, offered TOTALY REVOVATED ROOMS! That would not instill me with much confidence.

Altoona Mirror,  15 Apr 2001, Sun,  Page 48.jpg
Altoona Mirror – April 15, 2001

The revovation did not save the motel. The Minuet Manor became a Knight’s Inn before it ultimately closed.

Information on this place is spotty – so if I got something wrong please let me know so I can get it right. If anyone has information on the whereabouts of those pepper mills drop me a line!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s