The original Battle House built during 1852 burned down during 1905. The building that stands on the site now was built during 1908 making it one of Alabama's earliest structures to have a steel frame. A former military headquarters the Andrew Jackson set in the War of 1812 is where James Battle along with his nephews Samuel and John opened the original hotel during 1852.
Stephen A. Douglas stayed at the hotel when he lost the presidential election to Abraham Lincoln. Winfield Scott, Henry Clay, Millard Fillmore and Jefferson Davis were among the notable guests that visited the original Battle House. In 1880 there was the establishment of a station for the National Weather Service in the facility and in 1884 it obtained electric lighting. The hotel had been in operation over fifty years when it burned down during 1905.
Frank M. Andrews out of New York City was hired to design another structure after the fire. Concrete and steel were used to build the replacement. In 1908 the new building was reopened and was one of Mobile's prominent fixtures during both World Wars. In 1913 Woodrow Wilson was a guest at the Battle House, a Renaissance Hotel.
In 1974 the hotel which was a Sheraton at the time closed and stayed closed for three decades. The building which is listed as Battle House Royale is on the National Register of Historic Places since the building had the name while vacant during 1975. It was the only building intact on the block by 1980. Restoring the hotel was begun by the Retirement Systems of Alabama in 2003; in addition they did the adjoining skyscraper construction. This is the RSA Battle House Tower and by 2007 both were finished.
The Battle House, a Renaissance Hotel is eight stories high with a steel frame; the facings are brick and marble. There are paired Tuscan columns on the one story portico that is found at the building's street level. Individual window balustrades are on the recessed Tuscan loggias that can be found on the next level. There are cast iron balconies on the molded entablature found on the third story. There are articulated keystones on the window openings and cast iron balconies on the seventh level. There is a projecting cornice on the roof featuring scroll brackets.
The domed skylight in the hotel was put in during 1908; there are paintings and elaborate plasterwork on the walls and ceiling of the facility. The lobby of the Battle House, a Renaissance Hotel and Spa contains the Crystal Ballroom which was once the restaurant of the hotel. The room underwent restoration to return it to the vintage colors it had during 1908. There is an agricultural theme to the ornate plasterwork it features. There are now a number of social events held in the ballroom of the hotel.
For additional information about the facilities contact the Battle House, a Renaissance Hotel and Spa directly. Anyone in the Mobile area should make it a point to visit the historical building.