The Pine Colony Inn in Center is a treasure of Shelby County providing a home away from home. It is the kind of place that generates wonderful memories for its tenants. The history and the homey feeling that one gets didn't come easily, but was brought about with a great deal of hard work.
The building was once the Haley Hotel which was built in 1945 by Jess Haley, and took a very active role in Center activity as traveling salesmen and people of all walks of life attended the hotel. 40 years later it was a different story as no one was any longer visiting the hotel, it was closed, and had succumbed to natures advances. It was in disrepair and covered with vines, but when Pershing and Marcille Hughes saw it, they knew that they could turn it in to something even greater than it was, and had a vision to return it to its splendor.
The Hughes' already had experience providing accommodations for hunters at Caddo Pass Lodge which they established in 1965, and they saw similar possibilities for the old hotel on 500 Shelbyville Street.
It took a great deal of time for the Hughes’ to find out who owned the hotel, but finally it was learned that the hotel had been donated to Stephen F. Austin State University. Once this was learned the Hughes’ made contact and were able to work out an arrangement.
The Hughes' began to re-invent the hotel into something fresh, and they called it the Pine Colony Inn. It was a family effort and a complete renovation was done on the building. A labor of love which kept the Hughes' working late into the night many times. Marcille could be seen late at night working to lay the 2700 Saltillo tiles that line the entire bottom floor of the Inn, and were brought all the way from Mexico by Pershing. It was a painstaking effort to lay the tiles, but the fruit of their efforts can be seen today when visitors enter the establishment.
The Pine Colony Inn is a dream made true for Marcille. The most important thing to Marcille was that everything should reflect the “old times” with antiques throughout
Later, an addition was made to the side of the Inn and it was named The Tea Room. It is a very open dining area that provides the feeling of being outdoors and is a welcome place for visitors to dine.
There are 18 rooms altogether on the of which some include double occupancy and kitchenettes throughout. Some of the rooms even open out onto a large balcony that extends the length of the building. There is a uniqueness to every room in both size and decor.
The apartment that is on the second story has a full kitchen, a living room, two bedrooms, and a living room. This would be excellent space for a family looking to spend some time in Center, and have a large space in which to retire.
Another great space within the establishment is the boardroom/dining area which provides ample room for any gathering for holidays, business meetings, or any gathering.
Regina Vaughn who runs the business with her mother, Marcille, also has a framing business. Her frame work is hand-made and labor intensive, but the craftsmanship can be seen throughout the Pine Colony Inn as she features much of her frame work in its halls. There are paintings and sketches throughout from various artists that are available for purchase, and they are framed with Vaughn’s handiwork.
The inn has new nightly rates at $69 and weekly rates of $298. All of the rooms include a kitchenette, cable TV, and wireless internet service.
Those that are looking to schedule accommodations and perhaps frame work may contact the Pine Colony Inn at 936-598-7700, and speak to Regina who will take your reservation with a welcome home attitude. You can also visit http://www.pinecolonyinn.com/ for further information.