Era Of Historic Broadwater Hotel Comes To A Close - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

07/31/05

Era Of Historic Broadwater Hotel Comes To A Close

Sandy Benton was first hired as a pool waiter at the Broadwater Hotel in 1962.

"It was really enjoyable coming here and working every day," says Benton. "It seems as if I couldn't get here fast enough."

And not once in more than four decades did he call in sick.

"A lot of people say they're sick and they're not sick. And I've never been sick so I worked," he said.

Benton's now a bellman but he won't be working here anymore, as the job he's held for so long ends with the closing of this once grand hotel.

"It was someplace you knew you were going everyday to meeting nice people and try to enjoy serving them," Benton said.

Manager Deborah Tiblier who's worked here on and off for 30 years feels the same.

"This was the place to work," says Tiblier. "This was the place to be in the 70's, 80's, and 90's even today we're all still like family here, so we love working here."

Most employees have found jobs at the company's other properties or elsewhere.

Still others are retiring, some after more than half a century on the job.

But all agree their lives will never quite be the same without the Broadwater.

A sentiment front desk manager April Hoffman says is shared by her guests.

"We have had guest that have come here when they were children when their parents brought them here and they still come back," says Hoffman. "We have had guests this week that checked in and brought all of there family down here and we couldn't get them to stop crying, they're going to miss the place so much."

And they'll miss the faces that made this, a place generations of visitors wanted to returned to.

"I'll miss them. Sure I'll miss them," says Benton. "But like everything else, everything has to come to an end."

By: Don Culpepper

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