The Hotel Savarine / Winston Place Apartments

Winston Place is a nine-story apartment building located on the east side of Detroit. Built in 1926, the Hotel Savarine - as it was known then - was a "bachelor hotel" that catered to single men who couldn't afford the club life. One notable guest was writer Jack Kerouack, who according to the Metro Times, stayed there for a spell in 1949. "The Savarine afforded Kerouac, an avid baseball fan, a chance to meet the hotel's Detroit Tigers tenants."

The Hotel Savarine was later converted into apartments and renamed Winston Place. Most recently it was used for low-income housing up until the late 90’s / early 2000’s.

After sitting vacant for a time, it was announced in 2006 that the Winston Place was to be renovated into a 118 unit apartment building. According to construction logs, work had begun by March of 2006, though it halted later for unknown reasons after much of the building had been gutted.

On my first visit in April of 2010 the building was starting to show signs of wear. Rolls of carpet and boxes of network cabling lined the dark hallways, while water had started to pool on the first floor.

In August of 2010, the strip mall located directly next to the Winston was deliberately set on fire. Six Detroit firefighters were badly injured when a wall unexpectedly collapsed on them. While the Winston was larely untouched by the fire, it put a further damper on renovation efforts.

By the summer of 2011, the recently replaced windows had been broken out on all sides of the building. What little was left of the renovated interior had been scrapped out, as well as most of the wireless phone cell sites on the roof.