Dishes tell about Hotel Wausau
Hotel Wausau, now known as The Landmark apartments, was completed in 1925 and was the premier hotel in Wausau for several decades. In addition to 257 guest rooms, the elegant hotel featured the palatial Crystal Ballroom and dining room, the Blue Fountain Lounge and the Coffee Shoppe. For many years they hosted banquets, wedding receptions and conventions.
The hotel, located at 221 Scott Street in downtown Wausau, was part of the Schroeder chain of hotels, most of them built in Wisconsin. Before the hotel could be built, Wausau had to agree to spend at least $200,000 to help finance construction. The remaining $800,000 was to be provided by Chris Schroeder and Sons. The cost of purchasing the site (then occupied by the Bellis Hotel) was an additional $250,000.
The newly built hotel brought a great deal of business to downtown Wausau. Train travel was popular in those days and the hotel was located between the two Wausau depots, making it a convenient and lovely place to stay. In the 1970s, the hotel was turned into the 100-unit Landmark apartments, which still occupy the space along with a number of retail tenants.
The two pieces of dinnerware shown here were used at Hotel Wausau when it opened in 1925. Both were designed by Arthur Schiller & Son of Chicago, who primarily supplied china to hotels, railways and airlines. The center of the heavy 10½-inch charger plate is adorned with the image of a Native American chief along with several images showing local scenes, all nestled in a gold gilt garland. The 9-inch soup plate is edged with green and grey Classical garland decoration and “Hotel Wausau” is at the top center. As can be seen on the postcard, the garland motif is also used on the building exterior - at the center peak, below the third floor windows and between the eighth floor windows.
By Kathy Volkmann, Curator of Artifacts