Creative Direction: Round Table Design Inc
Branding & Graphics: One Fast Buffalo
Architecture: Overland Partners
The Hotel Santa Rita is not simply about an oil well, but the spirit of the people who believed in it, believed in the impossible. From the beginning of its story to the triumphant end it represents the fearless disposition, unceasing optimism and sheer force of will that persists in Midland today. It is these undeterred trail blazers that provided context and inspiration of what a hotel with the authentic Midland experience should be. The design of the hotel balances these ideals with both a timeless beauty and adventurous boldness. Old world style and rustic modernism is carefully punctuated by broad windows, celebrating the open expanse of the sprawling Midland sky. Spacious rooms are adorned with a collection of unique mementos and designed with a classic elegance to feel as comfortable and charmingly offbeat as the city we call home. The experience of the hotel is about hospitality with soul. Beyond impeccable service, our guests are here to enjoy the true friendliness, heart and genuine nature that are common place to the area. Our staff serves with a casual sophistication and effortless warmth making each guest feel welcomed and relaxed. So many years ago alongside a dusty rail track, the men pecking away at the rock to find oil proved this city was not for the faint of heart. We try to live with the same tenor and daring courage of those dreamers, never accepting defeat and always pursuing the next horizon. We hope in staying here you leave inspired, emboldened and blissful in the revelry of this small tale of the American spirit.
The Santa Rita No. 1 was the first proof oil existed in the Permian Basin and named after the patroness saint of impossible causes. She certainly lived up to her name out in the desert landscape of what was then a desolate, dusty area known as the oil man’s graveyard. For years, men of great wealth, knowledge and hope had come only to be disillusioned by the unforgiving terrain of West Texas. It would be the inexperienced but astonishingly resourceful pair of Frank T. Pickrell and Haymond Krupp that turned foolish hopes into an enterprise that would change the course of history, but not without first enlisting the help of an unlikely partner. Before the construction of the well began, a group of Catholic women were approached to invest. They were of course quite dubious of the endeavor and hoped to improve the probability of success where so many had tried and failed. As a condition of their investment, they handed Pickrell an envelope with a blessed single rose and requested the dried crimson petals be scattered from the crown block saying simply, “I hereby christen thee Santa Rita.” Invoking the saint of the impossible by no measure made the journey to success easy. For 646 long and certainly fearful days, the team chipped away at sand, salt and rock. Until on the morning of May 28, 1923 as a spray of glittering oil painted the land black, she made good on her promise. The Santa Rita No. 1 stills shows the power of optimism, the tenacity of the human spirit and the belief the impossible is within reach.
The interior concepts were a product of the creative team’s design charrette as well as comprehensive research on the West Texas region. The significant story of the Santa Rita No. 1, the wide open spaces and the three pivotal touchpoints of ranching, water, and 0il, were the springboards for the charmingly offbeat, classic style.
The Architectural design was inspired by the hauntingly beautiful West Texas landscape. The utilitarian red brick, black steel, and concrete represent a timeless sensibility.
From beginning to end, it had taken nearly two years of drilling for the Santa Rita to show any sign of oil. For those 646 days, settled in the unforgiving yet hauntingly beautiful terrain of West Texas a dream came to fruition, a fortune was made and a town was forever blessed with a little bit of luck. Some things change over time, but others remain the same. Oil & Gas still requires the vehement drive, calm resolve and a cautious amount of optimism it did back then. Here at the Six46 we tip our hat to the men who came before us and the history yet to be written. Our private memberships allow you to share a cigar with peers, have a quiet business meeting in our unique library, or simply grab a well made drink at the end of the day. Always be a gentleman.
In history there are those with vision and those who bring that vision to life. No one was more physically invested in the Santa Rita well than the driller, Carl G. Cromwell. He was a man to be admired, a man of grit, character and hardiness. Out there in the isolated terrain with his wife and little girl, he inched closer and closer each day towards the oil he hoped was below. Here we pay homage to a man who was always known to be honest, hospitable and ready to share his table with those who worked beside him. At Cromwells, whether you are hard at work or enjoying a meal with an old friend, we welcome you to our own table.