(June 14, 2009) The "grand lady" of all HoJo's, the former Times Square (46th Street) location, closed in 2005. Soon, apparel retailer American Eagle, will open it's flagship store in the former location. And while cosrtuction crews have unearthed lots of old brick from the former 100 year old-plus building that housed HoJo's, HoJoLand.com has unearther a 1959 letter from the Howard Johnson Company to the Rubenstein family, congratulating them on the recent opening of their HoJo's unit at 46th Street. Click on the photo to the right to see a larger version.
Former HJ Ice Cream Shop Caparra, Puerto Rico
Thanks To John Maimone
This page is in no way connected to or represented in any way by Wyndham Worldwide, owner of the "Howard Johnson" brand.
Wyndham Hotel Group today unveiled early details and designs around its Reinvigoration project for Howard Johnson®, a multi-year undertaking focused on elevating the overall guest experience by revitalizing all aspects of the brand—from property design and case goods to signature amenities and service. Announced at Wyndham Hotel Group’s 2013 Global Conference held here in Las Vegas, the project, which is backed by a significant investment in consumer research, represents the start of the next major chapter in the brand’s nearly 60-year lodging history. “Howard Johnson is a brand that for millions of travelers conjures fond memories of ice cream cones and family vacations,” said Wyndham Hotel Group President and CEO Eric Danziger. “It’s a name that carries with it incredible equity. Reinvigoration is about growing the brand and restoring it to its rightful place within the industry by inspiring that same type of brand loyalty and affinity from a new generation of consumers.”
As part of the unveiling, the brand shared conceptual interior and exterior designs that will begin appearing at yet-to-be-announced test locations throughout the U.S. as early as the end of next year. Best described as clean, fresh, fun and timeless, the designs showcase a new Howard Johnson that while modern in look and feel, offers a playful nod to its past. As an example, the brand is looking at ways to bring select flavors of ice cream back as a signature offering at all of its hotels. Also unveiled were early details around a new service training initiative that will launch as part of the larger project, an effort the brand believes will play an integral role shaping the overall guest experience at hotels. Said Danziger, “The goal is to create a consistent, outstanding product that exceeds guest expectations at all levels. To get there, great design is only one half of the equation, you need great service too.” Once tested and refined, the brand expects U.S. franchisees to have the opportunity to join the new Howard Johnson as early as 2015, provided a property has completed the necessary improvements, which are expected to vary from property to property. A new construction prototype is also expected to be available in the coming years.
Costs to join the new Howard Johnson are anticipated to be available prior to rollout, with the expectation that they will be competitive with other brands in the lower end of the midscale segment. The transition of the brand’s full portfolio to the new Howard Johnson—which will see the phasing out of the brands tiers, including Howard Johnson Inn, Howard Johnson Express Inn and Howard Johnson Plaza, among other changes—is expected to be a multi-year process.
Obituary: Daughter of Howard Johnson's Founder Dies at 83
continuing on to Briarcliffe Junior College and the New York School of Interior Design. Mrs. Henry's greatest passion was her family. Her two sons, William and Joshua were her greatest sources of pride and devotion. Throughout her life she served on many boards and committees, including the Boys and Girls Club of Greenwich and the board of Tabor Academy. She also served as the director of the Howard Johnson Foundation for many years. She loved to socialize, and was a hostess without equal. She will be remembered as a woman who held her door open for friends and family, as she delighted in bringing people together. She enjoyed memberships of the Jupiter Island Club, the Field Club of Greenwich, the Colony Club of New York City, and perhaps her favorite, the Edgartown Yacht Club, where she organized dances and was formerly the head of senior entertainment and a member of the House Committee. Mrs. Henry was an avid traveler throughout her life, visiting countless countries while delighting in taking her growing family of children and grandchildren with her. Though a resident of Greenwich, CT, she shared a deep love for Martha's Vineyard, where she summered for over fifty years. She was a lover of culture, rare antiques, and beautiful interiors, with her taste greatly influenced by her travels and studies. Her attention to detail, gracious hospitality and devotion to style will be her legacy for many years to come. Mrs. Henry was deeply beloved and is survived by her brother, Howard Brennan Johnson and his family, her two sons, William and Joshua, her daughters in law, Olivia and Christine, her six grandchildren and one great-grandchild, though many more thought of "Dottie" as family as well. A private graveside service for family was held in Milton, MA in October. A memorial gathering is scheduled for next summer (2014) in Edgartown, MA. In lieu of flowers, Mrs. Henry had wished for donations to be made in her memory to the Boys and Girls Club of the donor's choice. She was a true force of nature and the very definition of what a matriarch should be. She will be terribly missed.
GREENWICH, CT (October 9, 2013)
Dorothy Verne Johnson Henry, a longtime resident of Greenwich, CT and Edgartown, MA passed away on October 9th. She was 83 years old. Mrs. Henry was born on June 15th, 1930, to Howard Deering Johnson and his wife, Dorothy. Her father was the founder of the restaurant chain Howard Johnson's recognized as the largest restaurant chain in the world throughout the 1960's and 1970's. Mr. Johnson started the business with single soda fountain in 1925. Mrs. Henry was educated at the Dana Hall School in Wellesley, MA before
Company founder Howard D. Johnson (left) and daughter Dorothy (right) in an early photo.
Carl DeSantis, a former Howard Johnson's franchisee who once owned six Howard Johnson's Restaurants, as well as a HoJo "Red Coach Grill," suffered a stroke on New Year's Eve, according to his daughter, Holly DeSantis, in a Facebook posting on the HoJoLand Facebook Page CLICK HERE
DeSantis stated her father is recovering well and expected to be fine. DeSantis was also a Board Member of Franchise Associates, Inc. (FAI), an entity comprised of HoJo owners that attempted to revive the chain in the late 1980's and early 1990's.
Former Lake George, NY HoJo Franchisee Has Stroke; Recovering Nicely
Above: early postcard of Lake George, NY HoJo. Right: Carl DeSantis (1981 photo). Photo by Tom Killips, The Record
"I decided to surprise him and make Howard Johnson's Macaroni and Cheese using the recipe from Anthony Sammarco's excellent book ("A History of Howard Johnson's.")...it is so delicious and brings back so many memories! He is going to love it!," stated his daughter. All of us at HoJoLand wish Carl a speedy recovery!