email: roadarch@outlook.com
Loading

Howard Johnson's (page 1)

(hit "refresh" to get the most recent version of this page; click on photos for larger images)

The Howard Johnson's restaurant and hotel chain started out in Massachusetts in 1925 with a roadside ice cream stand. It grew into a restaurant and, by 1935, there were 25 Howard Johnson's ice cream and sandwich stands in MA. Expansion continued down the Atlantic Coast all the way to Florida. By the late 1930s, there were more than 100 locations. In 1954, Howard Johnson's opened its first Motor Lodge in Savannah, GA. By the late 1970s, there were over 1,000 restaurants and more than 500 motor lodges. In the mid-1980s, the company dropped the "apostrophe-s" and became Howard Johnson. Howard Johnson decided to focus on its more profitable hotel business and gradually began phasing out its restaurants. There are now only three operating restaurants: Lake George, NY; Lake Placid, NY; and Bangor, ME. The Bangor location is expected to close soon. Many of these former Howard Johnson restaurants and motor lodges have been adapted by other businesses. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Howard Johnson's
Lake George, NY
The Lake George Howard Johnson's opened in 1953. It is the last location in the chain to feature the finned cupola and the Simple Simon and Pieman weathervane. This restaurant closed in 2012. In 2014, it was announced that it would be reopening. This restaurant is not related to the Howard Johnson Tiki Resort just down the street. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Howard Johnson's
Lake Placid, NY
Howard Johnson's
Bangor, ME
The Lake Placid Howard Johnson's opened in 1956 and is still in business. However, there is now only a trace of the orange roof and the sign has been updated. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

The Howard Johnson's restaurant building in Bangor still survives but it has been drastically altered inside and out. In 2014, it was announced that it would be closing soon.

former Howard Johnson's in 2001
motor lodge gate house and restaurant
Waterbury, CT

as the Brass House Restaurant in 2010
Waterbury, CT
This Waterbury was the last Howard Johnson's restaurant left in Connecticut. In 2007, the management was notified that it could no longer use the Howard Johnson name and had to remove all traces of its association with the chain. The motor lodge has been remodeled to the point that it is no longer recognizable.

This restaurant opened in 1957 with the motor lodge opening in the early 1960s. Both structures were "environmentalized" in the 1970s, i.e., covered with wood panels and painted in earth tones. For more about this location, see these websites: 1, 2, and 3.

Crystal Inn
Neptune, NJ
Mike's Famous
New Castle, DE
The Crystal Inn uses a nicely maintained former Howard Johnson's motor lodge gate house as its office. It is believed that William Franklin Cann designed the the original gate house building in 1958. This Neptune building still retains the original Lamplighter weathervane. There is no Howard Johnson's restaurant building on the property. For more, see their website.

Mike's Famous, a Harley-Davidson dealer, restaurant, and museum, opened in 1999. It was built on the site of a former Howard Johnson's from 1957. Mike's restored the HoJo's gatehouse and used it as a take-out food stand. It is now used for storage and as a staff office. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

former Howard Johnson's
Baldwin Park, CA
This Howard Johnson's restaurant opened in 1965. The Motor Lodge opened in 1967. It closed in 1995. By 2004, the Motor Lodge had become a Regency Inn & Suites. The restaurant has been vacant since at least 2004. In 2012, this Motor Lodge was featured in an episode of the "Mad Men" television show. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

Howard Johnson's weathervane
San Jose, CA
The Howard Johnson's location in San Jose was built in 1968. This steeple and Simple Simon and the Lamplighter weathervane sign were installed on the Motor Lodge in 1969. They were removed in 1997 when the gate lodge building was demolished. They were preserved and installed in the interior courtyard of this Marriott Fairfield Inn & Suites.

former Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge
Framingham, MA
former Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge
Stratford, CT
The Framingham Howard Johnson's motor lodge building is now used by Best Western. For more, see this website.

The Stratford Howard Johnson's opened in 1966. The motor lodge building is is now used by the Honeyspot Motor Lodge. For more, see this website.

former Howard Johnson's
Motor Lodge [gone]
Milford, CT
former Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge
Grand Rapids, MI
The Howard Johnson's motor lodge in Milford was built in 1959. An adjacent existing restaurant was remodeled shortly thereafter to include the trademark orange roof and other features. The restaurant closed in 1999 and was remodeled again as a Friendly's. This gate lodge was an earlier design than those shown above. The motor lodge was condemned due to asbestos contamination and was abandoned for many years. It was demolished along with the motel rooms in 2013. There is a modern Howard Johnson Hotel located at the front of the property now. For more, see this website.

The Howard Johnson's motor lodge in Grand Rapids was built in 1964. It now houses an America's Best Inn & Suites. The restaurant building is gone. For more, see this website.

former Howard Johnson's
Asbury Park, NJ
This Asbury Park location opened in 1962. In the late 1980s, there were ten Howard Johnson's restaurants in NJ, but this was the only one left. This was mostly due to the fact that Asbury Park had been basically abandoned for years. In 2005, the interior was stripped of its original furnishings. In 2006, the restaurant reopened. However, by 2007, the Howard Johnson's sign was gone and the restaurant was being renovated (bottom row, first photo). In 2007, it reopened as the Salt Water Beach Cafe. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Howard Johnson's
(page 2)
Howard Johnson's
(page 3)
Main Eateries Page

copyright: all photos contained at this website are copyrighted and may be used only with consent

RoadsideArchitecture.com