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New Mexico Signs: Albuquerque (page 1)

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Aztec Motel [gone]
Albuquerque, NM
Premiere Motel
Albuquerque, NM
The Aztec Motel opened in 1932 as the Aztec Auto Court. The original sign was replaced with this one in 1961. It was restored in 2003. The motel was demolished in 2011. In 2015, plans were made for a new development on the lot and the sign was removed. It is now in storage as the City seeks a new place to install it. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

The Premiere Motel opened in 1941. The original sign is located down the side street. However, that sign has now been painted a solid brown. Both the Aztec and Premiere signs are probably from the 1950s and/or 1960s. They were restored in 2008. However, they are not lit at night. The tall sign was repainted in the original colors. It has been painted red for many years. The neon element at the top of the tall sign probably flashed in sequence originally. [map]

Pioneer Motel
Albuquerque, NM
The Pioneer Motel was built as the Pioneer Luxury Court in 1949. These signs are from 1958. The taller sign is no longer lit. The arrows on both signs were later additions. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

former Jimmie's Oriental Restaurant
Albuquerque, NM
Mark's Casa Chevrolet
Albuquerque, NM
2006: 2012: 2012: 2017:
Jimmie's Oriental Restaurant is long gone but this sign remains. Just before these 2012 photos were taken, the text part of the sign was painted white and the neon was removed. By 2014, the entire sign had been painted white and was advertising for Metro PCS. [map]

The Mark's Casa Chevrolet used car dealership had a Chevrolet "OK" used car sign. These signs were mass-produced. However, this sign in Albuquerque did not have the tapered mid-section like all the others I have seen. This photo is from 2012. By 2014, the sign was gone. The dealership is still there. The sign is now in a private collection.

Royal Fork Buffet
Albuquerque, NM
Ponderosa
Mobile Home
Haven
Albuquerque, NM
Nob Hill Shoe Repairers [gone]
Albuquerque, NM
The Royal Fork Buffet sign is from 1960. The restaurant was once part of a chain. This location has been gone since at least the 1980s. The building has being converted into the Royal Fork Lofts. The sign has been left as-is. [map]

The Ponderosa Mobile Home Haven signs are probably from the 1950s or 1960s. For more, see this website. [map]

The Nob Hill Shoe Repairers sign was installed in 1948. This photo is from 2012. The sign was still there in 2014 but gone in 2015. It was sold to a private collector when the business moved across the street. The business is still open.

Desert Sands
Motor Hotel
Albuquerque, NM
Ski-Hi Liquors
Albuquerque, NM
former Nob Hill Motel
Albuquerque, NM
The Desert Sands Motor Hotel was built in 1954. There was a different sign there originally. This sign is probably from the 1960s. The motel was demolished in 2016. This sign was still there in 2017 but it may be going to a private collector soon. For more, see this website. [map]

The Ski-Hi Liquors sign is probably from the 1950s or 1960s. For more, see this website. [map]

The Nob Hill Motel was built in 1937 as the Modern Auto Court. This sign is probably from the 1950s. The first photo above was taken in 2006. Around 2009, the motel was converted into retail and office space known as Nob Hill Court. At that time, the sign was repainted and adapted. The second and third photos above are from 2012. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Range Cafe
Albuquerque, NM

The diving woman sign inside the Range Cafe was purchased at an antiques store in Los Angeles. He was told that it might have come from the Reno, NV area. The owner swears that it's vintage. He repaired some of the neon but left the paint intact. However, it's very possible that it's a well-done modern sign. Diving women were once a common element on motel signs to indicate that the place had a pool. There are very few diving women left as most motels got rid of them when the pools were filled in with concrete. The most famous and largest diver is located at the Starlite Motel in Mesa, AZ.

Kurt's Camera Corral
Albuquerque, NM
2012: 2017:
Kurt's Camera Corral opened in 1950 and this sign is probably from then. In 2015, it was announced that the store was closing. The signs were removed in 2016. The main sign is in a private collection.

MG's Grand
Liquors [gone]
Albuquerque, NM
Zia Motor Lodge
Albuquerque, NM
Loma Verde Motel
Albuquerque, NM
Silver Fox
Lounge [gone]
Albuquerque, NM
MG's Grand Liquors probably went by a different name originally. The store is still there but this sign is gone. The photo above is from 2006. Apparently, the sign was restored and moved to Socorro, NM by 2011 for a movie shoot. Shortly thereafter, the sign was blown down in a storm and significantly damaged. It is now in storage and there are no immediate plans to repair it.

The Zia Motor Lodge was built around 1938 as the Zia Lodge. By 1961, a smaller zia symbol sign was replaced with this one. The sign panel came from the Sentry Hiway House motel and was reworked for the Zia Lodge. The starburst at the top of the sign flashed at night. The motel was demolished in 2005 but this sign remains on the vacant lot. For more, see this website. [map]

The Loma Verde Motel was probably built around the 1930s. This sign is most likely from the 1950s. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

The Silver Fox Lounge closed in 2009 and the sign was removed. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

Western View Diner
& Steak House
Albuquerque, NM
Luna Lodge
Albuquerque, NM
Tewa Lodge
Albuquerque, NM
Western View Diner & Steak House opened in 1941. This sign is probably from the 1950s or 1960s. For more, see this website. [map]

The Luna Lodge was built in 1949. This sign may be from the 1960s. In 2012, the property was redeveloped as apartments. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. [map]

The Tewa Lodge was built in 1946. This sign is probably from the 1960s. For more, see these websites: 1, 2, and 3. [map]

El Vado Motel
Albuquerque, NM
2012: 2017:
The El Vado Motel opened in 1937 as the El Vado Auto Court. This sign is probably from the 1950s. The motel closed in 2005 and was threatened with demolition. It is now owned by the City. In 2014, plans were announced to convert the motel into a boutique motel with shops and a food court. Remodeling is expected to start in 2016. Just after this photo was taken in 2012, it was announced that the sign would be restored with grant money. By 2016, the sign had been restored and was on display at the Albuquerque Museum. In 2017, the sign was reinstalled on the property. The motel buildings are still being worked on and will house a boutique motel and retail shops. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Albuquerque
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