10 Fast Facts About French Lick Resort


Here's a look back at some fun "fast facts" concerning the restoration of French Lick Resort. See how many you know.


Restoration of Hotel
1)    The restoration of French Lick Springs and West Baden Springs Hotels was the largest privately-funded restoration project in Indiana, and one of the largest private historic restoration projects undertaken in the US. (More than $500 million dollars.)
2)    The resort grounds now encompass over 3,000- acres.

Interior Gold Leafing
3)    More than $64,000 was spent for the 23 ¾ karat gold leafing used on the exterior of French Lick Springs Hotel.

4)    More than $230,000 karat gold leafing was used on interior surfaces throughout the resort.

The Dome's Steel Beams
5)    2.5 million lbs. of steel beams were used to shore up West Baden Springs Hotel during restoration.

Donald Ross Course
6)    Donald Ross originally designed his namesake golf course in 1917. Through the years, it underwent several detrimental changes. The original blueprints were found in a vault at local Springs Valley Bank & Trust, and were used to restore the course to its original 1923 PGA Tournament-hosting condition in 2005.

7)    Approximately 1,956 gallons of paint were used on French Lick Springs Hotel.

Roofing West Baden Springs Hotel
8)    To lighten the load on the roof of the dome at West Baden Springs Hotel, 465,000 lbs. of roofing material had to be removed. It was replaced with 62,000 lbs. of new material.

Stained Glass Window
9)    The Jesuits added the stained glass windows to the lobby of West Baden Springs Hotel when it was used as their sanctuary. Eight of the arched transoms were later stolen when the hotel fell into disrepair. Four were recovered in a Louisville antique shop, and the other four were reproduced by Sunburst Stained Glass Co. of Newburgh, Ind.

Dye's Original Sketch
10)  Golf Course Designer Pete Dye originally refused to build the course on Mt. Airie because the slopes were too severe and the terrain was too rugged. But after thinking it over, Dye returned with the plans sketched out on a napkin, determined to "build the course whether they want me to or not." 

By Joy Neighbors