Loews Don CeSar Hotel

St. Pete Beach, FL

History of Loews Don CeSar Hotel

From high society’s playground to starring on the silver screen to gulf coast icon, Loews Don CeSar boasts a long and storied history. Distinguished celebrities such as Clarence Darrow and F. Scott Fitzgerald once frolicked here. We’ve served in the Great War—and served guests just like you for decades. With sugar-fine beaches, blazing sunsets, a world-class spa, and two heated pools, it seems you really can have it all. More than a history lesson, The Don is a study in epic style.


Thomas Rowe opens the iconic Don CeSar right on the Gulf in St. Pete Beach, Florida. The “Pink Palace” became the pampered playground for high society—the likes of F. Scott Fitzgerald and Clarence Darrow. 


Thomas Rowe dies and his estranged wife, Mary, inherits the hotel.


The U.S. Army purchased the hotel to be used as a sub-base hospital, then a convalescent center for airmen returning from their WWII tour.


The hotel became the VA Regional Office and recreation center.


A small group of citizens formed a “Save the Don” committee and began to search every avenue to establish a reputable group of investors to refurbish the Don.


William Bowman became the new owner and began the $3.5 million-restoration project.


The Don CeSar reopened as a hotel.


The Don CeSar added to the National Register of Historic Places.


Robert Di Niro, James Woods and Tuesday Weld star in Once Upon a Time in America featuring scenes on the beach and the majestic Don CeSar in the background.


Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers film MTV video special at the Don CeSar.


Don CeSar is founding member of National Trust of Historic Hotels of America.


Filmed TV drama Thunder In Paradise featuring Hulk Hogan.


Filmed Forever Mine featuring Ray Liotta, Gretchen Mol and Ralph Fiennes.


Don CeSar becomes a Loews Hotel.


Loews Don CeSar celebrates its 80th Anniversary on January 16th. In March of that same year, Spa Oceana opens to rave reviews.


Million-Dollar Meeting space renovations completed and John Marks named Loews Hotels’ General Manager of the year.


Maritana Grille is renovated.


Lobby, Lobby Bar and Sea Porch Restaurant undergo renovation.


Multi-million guestroom renovations completed as part of the next phase of the “New” Legendary Pink Palace.

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