Yosemite’s Ahwahnee Hotel to close for two months for earthquake upgrades

Rooms in a hotel are lit up as dusk falls.
The historic Ahwahnee Hotel is lit up as dusk falls over Yosemite Valley.
(John Walker / Fresno Bee)

The 95-year-old Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park will close for two months at the start of 2023 to undergo a $31.6-million renovation to make the hotel better equipped to withstand earthquakes, the park announced Tuesday.

“This much-needed work will ensure the Ahwahnee is seismically safe for present and future generations of Yosemite visitors,” park Supt. Cicely Muldoon said in a statement.

The project is funded by the Great American Outdoors Act, the park said, and will require the historic hotel to shut its doors from Jan. 2 to March 2. On Wednesday, the hotel’s website was already warning would-be guests of the closure.

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The work will include bracing chimneys and walls, the park said. The hotel will also get a kitchen renovation and an upgrade to its heating and air conditioning systems.

Built in the 1920s, the hotel is located near some of the park’s most popular attractions, including Half Dome, Yosemite Falls and Glacier Point. The hotel has hosted dignitaries and royalty, including Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, and Presidents Kennedy and Obama.