PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Pascagoula's La Font Inn served its last dinner Saturday. The owners of the local icon announced Friday the inn's food and beverage service will soon stop, as they focus their efforts on finding a new use for the property.
Since the 1960's residents say most events that happened in Pascagoula happened at the La Font Inn. The Inn's restaurant and meeting area, originally constructed to serve motel guests, quickly became the heart of Pascagoula's community.
"The restaurant was put in to serve people who stayed in the motel, but it became the center place for all the city clubs, all the politicians who make announcements," said Roy Williams, one of the inn's owners. "Trent Lott started his career here and ended his career here."
Williams and fellow owner Jack Hoover said the hotel's meeting areas and newly renovated restaurant and bar aren't drawing a big enough crowd to continue operation. They said within a month the food and beverage service will close. That means the various civic groups that meet there will have to find new homes.
"It's very difficult," said Hoover. "We bring our families to eat here and go to meetings here."
"We had to notify those people, our employees," said Williams. "We had a lot of banquets, weddings receptions, all sorts of things planned over the summer, so we had to let those people know. And we're doing that."
As they pack up the food service operation, Hoover and Williams look forward to other opportunities, including a possible assisted living area for seniors that would take up 1/3rd of the property. They have no immediate plans to close the motel; although they're prepared to do so for future development.
"We'll spend as much time as it needs, what money we have to, to get this place back to where it's something the city can be proud of," said Williams. "Something the citizens can be proud of, and hopefully we'll start using it."
"We want to see it develop and be bigger and better than what we have now because Pascagoula deserves that," said Hoover.
The Inn served its last dinner Saturday night. The last breakfast will be served Tuesday morning and lunch will continue for the next few weeks.
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