Mayo Hotel

Kristin Pack Historic Buildings

The Mayo HotelThis Chicago School (Sullivanesque) style building has eighteen floors. Its massive base of two-story Doric columns and entablature support fourteen floors in a ‘shaft’ of single double-hung windows with the center and corner pairs adorned with false terra cotta balconies. The building’s crown is two levels of stone with arcaded windows separated by false pillars, capped by a dentiled cornice. This building is also significant for its association with the history and growth of the city. Pioneer Tulsa brothers, John D. and Cass A. Mayo, built the hotel in 1925, patterning it after the Plaza in New York City. Their goals were elegance of decor and fine service. Ceiling fans in each room and Tulsa’s first running ice water made the hotel a haven from summer heat. Once the tallest building in Oklahoma, the hotel, which originally had 600 rooms, is an example of early Tulsa’s optimistic attitude concerning its growth potential.

The Mayo served as a residence for J. Paul Getty for several years, and the John D. Mayo family lived in the hotel from 1941 until Mayo’s death in 1972. The Mayo and the Mincks-Adams Hotels are the only large hotels that survive from this early period of Tulsa’s growth.