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BOTSFORD INN, ONCE OWNED BY HENRY FORD, SOLD TO CREON SMITH

 FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich., Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Michigan's oldest inn changed hands for only the third time in seven decades today when it passed into the hands of longtime innkeeper Creon Smith.
 Smith, former host and general manager of the Mayflower Hotel in Plymouth, Mich., acquired ownership of the Botsford Inn on Thursday, Nov. 18, from John Anhut. Automotive pioneer Henry Ford owned the Botsford Inn from 1922-49 when it was sold to the Anhut family who operated the historic inn for the next 48 years.
 For the past several years, Anhut had been searching for a suitable buyer so he could retire as Botsford innkeeper and finally found one in Smith, whom he brought in as general manager to work directly under his tutelage last December before finalizing the sale.
 At the Mayflower, Smith over the years played host to celebrities from throughout the nation -- personalities such as Abigail Van Buren, Steve Guttenberg, Virginia Graham, Dorothy Kilgallen, Scott Carpenter, Dorothy Lamour, and President and Mrs. George Bush. In fact, according to Smith, he became friends with the president and his wife, and it was Barbara Bush who knighted Smith as "The Host With the Most Destined to Succeed."
 Now Grand River and Eight Mile is Smith's new home as he will play host and innkeeper at Michigan's oldest inn. "My mission is to preserve the Botsford Inn under one ownership for the next 50 years so I will become the last individual owner. My hope is that the inn will then be turned over to an institution which will run it as a training ground for students who want to continue the art of innkeeping. The profession of innkeeping will never die; it has been around since the birth of Christ and will be here forever," Smith said.
 Smith is buying the Botsford Inn on a land contract for about $1.5 million. "John Anhut was a good friend for many years of Ralph Lorenz, who built the Mayflower Hotel into an institution. I learned from Ralph Lorenz and became a friend of John Anhut's and so today I feel a bit like a torch-bearer," Smith said.
 "The Botsford Inn is a wonderful place, a national historic landmark filled to the brim with history. Built in 1936, it was a stagecoach stop between Detroit and Brighton for many years before being acquired by Henry Ford. I love the idea of preserving something so unique for others to enjoy for the next 50 years. My challenge is to maintain the highest standard of quality and create more visibility for the Botsford," Smith said.
 -0- 11/18/93
 /CONTACT: Creon D. Smith of the Botsford Inn, 313-474-4800/


CO: The Botsford Inn ST: Michigan IN: LEI SU: TNM

ML -- DE003 -- 5910 11/18/93 09:45 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 18, 1993
Words:464
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