Owyhee Plaza revamped
Historic Owyhee Plaza to be converted to apartments. Video by IdahoOnYourSide.comvideo
Modern buildings seem to be sprouting up all over downtown Boise.
But the charm of the city has always been it's renovated historical buildings.
And now another century old building will be transformed.
Tonight we take a look back at the history and future of the Owyhee plaza hotel.
It was the happening place in Boise when it opened in 1910.
"In it's heyday, it attracted all the business and top politicians of the day." says historian Douglas Stanwiens.
The Owyhee, along with the Idanha, was the place where everyone who's anyone stayed in the City of Trees.
The entertainment was also top of the line.
"Obviously, Gene Harris played there a number of times."
Back in the day, historian Doug Stanweins says this amazing rooftop patio was hopping.
"The rooftop gardens and bar and dance floor they had up there would have attracted people to downtown Boise with the Boise skyline as a background."
"It never had any issues but the obvious question I'd think is someone falling over the edge."
The new owner, Clay Carley says the rooftop will be a future attraction but not for the same reason as in the past.
"Those days they didn't have AC so people travelling from seattle to salt lake would stop in at Boise and the Owyhee to get out of the heat." says Carley.
Carley says the motel on 11th and grove will be torn down,
Hotel rooms will be turned into apartments and the Gamekeeper restaurant will be upgraded.
The idea is to turn the Owyhee into Boise's most desired meeting place.
"Every square inch needs attention," says Carley, "But the bones are great! And it's a real part of the fabric of this community."
The removal of the motel at 11th and grove will begin in 4-5 weeks.
The apartments should be done by the end of the year.