Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Signature Inn, Indianapolis/Carmel, IN

aerial imagery courtesy of Bing maps

map graphic courtesy of signature-inns.com at archive.org
Signature Inn opened its Carmel, Indiana location in February 1997.  Located on the north side of Indianapolis, this hotel was Signature's smallest hotel, with only 81 rooms.  This was one of the last two hotels that the chain opened and its final new-build hotel.
Looking at the building upon entering the driveway
Early on in the project, I had a hard time believing this was a Signature Inn.  I mean, it didn't look like any of the others!  How could it be?  As I pored over property records and map captures, I finally resigned myself to believing it was, in fact, a Signature Inn at one point.

Lucky for me, I had a travel opportunity come up in early June 2015 which took me right through the Indianapolis area.  Along with the other 5 Indianapolis locations, I was able to visit this one and see the building first-hand (and from the ground!)

As I drove into the parking lot, it looked like your typical hotel-in-a-box.  There was one feature, however, that immediately stuck out at me and confirmed it was originally built as a Signature Inn.
Front entrance of the hotel
Yes, the hotel still sports a Signature Inn logo!  I find it hard to believe that it wasn't covered up, at the very least, but am thankful that it's still prominently displayed on the front of the building.
A couple of close-ups of the logo
It's very possible that this could have been the new Signature Inn look.  With a simpler design and a smaller footprint, they undoubtedly would have saved on construction costs.
Looking at the front of the hotel from the other direction
The hotel would become a Jameson Inn in 2006 when many of the remaining hotels switched over to the Jameson flag.  It remained a Jameson Inn until December 2012 or January 2013, when the last hotels were sold.  Since then, the hotel has been a Comfort Inn.
The hotel's east side, with the Comfort Inn signage.  The pool area is at the right of the building, the hotel's rear.  No S-shaped pool here :(
Below are a couple of newspaper snippets:

classified ad looking for applicants at the yet-to-open hotel
announcement of the hotel's opening
grand-opening announcement

sources for this post include the Hamilton County, Indiana, auditor's website, signature-inns.com archived at archive.org, jamesoninns.com archived at archive.org, and imagery found through Bing Maps.  Newspaper ads courtesy of The Indianapolis Star archived at newspapers.com

Photographs not accredited in their captions were taken by me.  These and additional photos can be found here: Formerly Signature Inn by Ryan on Flickr

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