Route 66 News

Aztec Hotel to be refurbished

The Pasadena Star-News reports that the lobby and bar of the historic Aztec Hotel on Route 66 in Monrovia, Calif., will undergo a $100,000 renovation in the coming weeks.

That already had been reported here. However, today’s story contains more details about a 20-day liquor-license suspension of the hotel’s bar, The Brass Elephant.

ABC cited the bar for excessive calls for police services, disturbances to neighbors, allowing alcohol consumption in unlicensed parts of the business, delaying and obstructing police during their investigation and failing to allow an examination of books and records.

It said the violations took place between January 2004 and March 2006 and that undercover agents were used to obtain evidence.

Reece-NcNeill, who has owned hotel since Sept. 6, 2000, said the allegations are false. But her attorney told her it would cost $150,000 to fight the charges and she had to decide if she wanted to spend money on a court battle or hotel restoration.

“I decided to use the money to restore the hotel,” she said. “I met with ABC officials and we worked out an agreement. They know I want to run the bar properly. I agreed to conditions, but I didn’t admit to any of the charges, and we reached a complete settlement.

Word around the campfire from well-informed roadies at last year’s National Route 66 Festival was that the charges against the tavern were trumped-up and questionable. The fact there is a settlement seems to give credence to that.