Filed Under Tourism

The Sandman Hotel

The Sandman Hotel was constructed in 1955 by H & J Construction Company.

In a 1956 advertisement, the Sandman offered "Resort living at its finest." Owner/managers Clayton, Mary & Virginia Niven offered a variety of different room types, including studio apartments and more traditional rooms. Rates varied by season, with rates in the hot desert summer being the lowest. They even offered air conditioning, describing their rooms as "refrigerated." The advent of air conditioning in the 1930s created temperate indoor conditions that helped fuel both tourism and migration to the Sunbelt.

Unlike other hotels along the once-bustling avenue, the Sandman survived the development of the Interstate system. Today the Sandman is still in business, and it retains the same layout, including the presence of multiple large palm trees, that it had in the 1960s.


Sandman Motel Post Card
Sandman Motel Post Card In this idealized postcard, a neon sign beckons middle-class travelers to stop at the bustling motor hotel. The Sandman was ideally located along Van Buren--the main artery through Phoenix and the route of US Highways 60, 70, 80, & 89. Creator: Petley Studios, Phoenix Date: c. 1960
Advertising the Opening
Advertising the Opening The Sandman studio apartments and motor hotel opened in 1955, highlighting its landscaping, studio apartments, and air conditioning. Source: "The Opening of the New Sandman," Arizona Republic, Oct 16, 1955, pg. 10, sec. 5. Date: 1955



Suzanne Collett, “The Sandman Hotel,” Salt River Stories, accessed July 16, 2024,