Historic Hotel Bethlehem in Pennsylvania carries a storied past rooted in community. The land it inhabits was once home to the City of Bethlehem’s first house in 1741. The growth of the neighborhood and frequent visitors to the region sparked the interest to turn the house into the Golden Eagle Hotel, which operated from 1794 to 1919. Not long after its tenure, the hotel was demolished and replaced. Fast forward 100 years and the structure remains today—now refreshed, restored, and operating as a 125-room property with the Historic Hotels of America.
“Historic Hotels of America is a great organization because it is a part of the National Trust … it is about restoration preservation, which we are about,” says Kelly Ronalds, director of room sales and guest experiences for the hotel. “Historic hotels have special needs and [Historic Hotels of America] puts you in contact with those who can help restore and maintain and ensure the future of the property.”
Situated in Historic Moravian Bethlehem—an area of Bethlehem named the U.S. nominee for the World Heritage Destination last year—the hotel is near a collection of awe-inspiring museums, Lehigh and Moravian universities, and is a free 10-minute shuttle ride away from the Lehigh Valley International Airport. “[The designation] really truly authenticates our colonial history,” she says.
In addition to its intriguing history, the hotel also features over 19,000 square feet of meeting and banquet space for groups of all kinds. The Grand Ballroom features three beautiful balconies that overlook more than 3,000 square feet of space and The Mural Ballroom showcases seven murals painted by George Gray that depict the story of the city and has the capacity for up to 140 for seated events. The Lehigh and Lafayette prefunction spaces on the mezzanine level overlook the lobby, and the Northampton and Moravian boardrooms on the third level do well for small-scale sessions of up to 30 people.
Located off-site but still near the hotel is the Executive Conference Center, a 5,000-square-foot space with a large conference room and five separate breakout spaces. Lehigh and Moravian universities also offer expansive meeting spaces on campus.