Renovation of Historic Hotel Atwater

Atwater’s neighbors Mr. Ning’s and The Steamer Trunk

to remain open in their current locations

through next summer

The Santa Catalina Island Company today announced it will begin renovating Hotel Atwater in November 2017, with reopening scheduled for April 2019, in time for the 100th anniversary of the historic hotel’s grand opening on July 1, 1920.

The renovation of the 92-room hotel was moved back from its original February 2017 start to avoid impacting the 2017 tourist season, both in terms of construction activity and reduction of the city’s overall room inventory. "We’re thrilled to have the Atwater open this coming summer,” said Jim Luttjohann, CEO of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau. “Those rooms play a major role in accommodating the USC marching band every July when they come to town for our annual fireworks celebration.”

Atwater’s revised construction schedule means that Avalon residents and visitors will be able to enjoy Mr. Ning’s Chinese Garden for another season, as Mr. Ning’s owners have decided to postpone retirement and keep their restaurant open through the summer of 2017.

The Steamer Trunk, which opened next to Hotel Atwater in 1999, will also remain in its current location through the coming summer before moving to Crescent Avenue. “We’ve enjoyed being Atwater’s neighbor all these years, and we’re looking forward to continued success at our new location,” said Sue Rikalo, owner of the popular gift shop, which features hand-painted reproductions of Catalina tile. 

While plans to commemorate Hotel Atwater’s 100th anniversary in 2020 have not yet been made, the Santa Catalina Island Company looks forward to these renovations ushering in a new chapter in the continuing story of this historic hotel, which once featured the world’s largest cafeteria and also served as housing for Maritime servicemen during World War II.

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