|The Blue Angel Motel signage as seen from Fremont Street. A separate sign welcomes visitors from East Charleston Boulevard.|
The most fantastic part for me was being surrounded by people who share my passion for vintage neon, and the amount I was able to learn from them in less than 48 hours was extraordinary. I learned about bygone signs in Portland and Reno and giant signs still standing in the bay area. Sadly I also learned that the Blue Angel Motel on Fremont Street is to be demolished in the near future. A new development is set to be built in the Blue Angel's place, and the Para-A-Dice motel across the street has already been razed. Following the ribbon cutting ceremony in December 2011 Las Vegas Weekly posted this article about the fate of the iconic Blue Angel, designed by the sign geek famous Betty Willis. Ms. Willis is deserving of her own post, so I'll have to share more about her later.
Since the ribbon cutting ceremony the Blue Angel Motel has been vacated and now sits with the windows boarded and a chain link fence circling the building. Despite this, it seems that the development project has now stalled without any visible progress. According to this Las Vegas Weekly article update, there are still plans to save the Blue Angel herself if the project moves forward. I'm hoping the additional signage is part of the preservation and restoration plans. I love those giant neon arches.
I think perhaps my favorite photograph of the motel on our trip was taken by Lost San Jose. You can find it here...