Historic Lorenz Hotel renovations revealed in open house


REDDING, Calif. - An open house for the historic Lorenz Hotel in Downtown Redding revealed the first of many changes the hotel will see.

The hotel is being renovated in phases; Wednesday's open house displayed the first phase.

The final changes will include new laundry rooms, a small living room, a bedroom and bathroom and a kitchen.

Operation Manager Willie Smith said the kitchen was her dream, literally.

"I woke up one morning, about three in the morning, and went ‘We've got to put kitchens in,'" Smith said. "So I called my boss who's absolutely great and said ‘Let's do kitchens' And he said ‘Really? Kitchens?' I said yes …. We came in with architects."

Marge Fristoe, a tenant in one of the partially remodeled apartments, moved in to the hotel in December.

She said that she doesn't like to leave.

"This is the first place I ever had that was brand new," Fristoe said. "No one ever lived here except me, and I just love it! I'm 83 years old and I've lived my whole life without much, and this is a lot."

The $14 million renovations are headed by the Christian Church Homes Project. There are a total of 60 units being worked on at the Lorenz Hotel, the oldest building in the CCH's nationwide network. As of Wednesday, 18 apartments were in phase two and 21 apartments were in phase three.

Christian Church Homes is also renovating 50 units at the Redding Hotel.

The changes at the Lorenz Hotel should be complete come October.

Smith said that as baby boomers age, the need for low income senior housing is becoming critical.

"It's like a gift that we can give to these residents," said Smith. "And they deserve it."