Hot Lake Resort is located 8.4 miles southeast of La Grande in the southern part of the Grande Ronde Valley of Union County. A historic hotel, an example of the Colonial Revival style, was built over 150 years ago. Hot Lake Resort has a long and fascinated history of prosperity and decline.
Hot Lake Resort Features
Water temperature (source): 208°F (98°C)
Water acidity level: alkaline (pH=9.5)
Type of spring: sodium chloride and silica carbonated
Average dissolved solids:465 ppm
Chemical used: none
Access allowed: year-round
Development: resort, hot tubs
Service: restaurant, museum, art gallery, spa
Distance from parking: none
Fees: lodging rates are available on the Hot Lake resort's official website
Elevation: 2800 ft (853 m)
GPS coordinates: 45.243,-117.9607
Address: 66172 Oregon 203, La Grande, OR 97850
Hot Lake Resort of Eastern Oregon or Ea-Kesh-Pa as the Native American tribe of Nez Perce called it, was used as a place to nurse the sick or injured prior to 1812. In 1812, Robert Stuart of the William Price Hunt expeditions discovered the hot lake.
Unnecessary to mention, the Hot Lake Springs became a beautiful spot for the early fur traders; Hot Lake Springs slowly blossomed to be a resting place for those traveling along the Oregon Trail.
In 1864 Newhard with his partner built the first wooden structure. The 'Town Under One Roof’ progressed into a covered shopping mall and later into a grand three-story brick resort by the end of 1908.
In 1917 Dr. Phy purchased the Hot Lake resort and made a hospital known by the name of 'Mayo Clinic of the West’ on the third floor of the property. The crowds flocking towards the resort continued to grow until a sudden Sunday fire destroyed the eastern wing of the resort.
Over the next 70 years the property was the beneficiary of multiple grants and changed hands several times; however, Hot Lake Springs never returned to its former grandeur. World War II saw the Springs turn into a Pilot’s School and Nurses Training Center. As time progressed multiple business models were adopted to restore the Springs; all unsuccessful.
In 2003 the Manuel Family bought Hot Lake Resort and started a long restoration process. In 2010 Hot Lake Springs opened for its operations.
Today, not only are the Hot Lake Resort open for business, but they are also well on their way to becoming an Eastern Oregon Vacation Hotspot. Hot Lake is located towards the northern base of a small treeless hill. In the northern direction, the view encompasses a massive sweep of a complete mountain lined Grande Ronde Valley. The Blue Mountains are situated towards the west with the Wallowa to the east.
The large hot lake is divided in half by the road leading into the resort. The restored resort itself is complete with a 22 room Bed & Breakfast, public hot tubs, Restore Salon Spa, art gallery, a two-floor museum, Magnoni’s Fine Italian Dining, a coffee shack, Cackleberries breakfast nook, a ballroom, gift shop and even a movie theater.
Art lovers would love the Bronze Sculpture Gallery and the Artist Market Place. Finally, for those just looking for a relaxing getaway the mineral spring soaks and the ReStore SalonSpa await. It may have taken the Manuel Family upwards of 10 years to restore and recapture the lost beauty of the grand dame of Eastern Oregon but Hot Lake Springs is now prepared for full-fledged operation and welcomes you with open hands.
Direction to Hot Lake Resort
From I-84, take exit 265 to OR-203 toward La Grande. Follow 5.3 miles to OR-203 S, turn right onto OR-203 S and continue for 5 miles to the destination.
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