The California State Historical Resources Commission has voted to place the former Far Western Tavern building in Guadalupe on the California Register of Historic Resources.
The building is currently owned by the Dunes Center, which it received as a gift from the Minetti family.
It was built in 1912 as the Palace Hotel, run by Swiss-Italian immigrant Ercolina Forni. In 1958, the Minetti and Maretti families opened the popular Far Western Tavern restaurant at the location.
According to the Dunes Center, the Commission determined the building eligible for the register under two criteria - it is associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of local or regional history or the cultural heritage of California or the United States, and it is associated with the lives of persons important to local, California or national history.
The Dunes Center is currently working to transform the building into a natural history museum. Plans reportedly include a classroom and exhibits about the building's history, local agricultural families, indigenous peoples, and artifacts from the production of Cecil B. DeMille's "The Ten Commandments," which was filmed in the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes in the 1920s.
To celebrate the building's designation as a historic resource, the Dunes Center is inviting the public to a toast at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 15 at La Simpatia, located at 827 Guadalupe Street.