Postcard postmarked March 12, 1967: Dan Donahue
Whippany, New Jersey -- 1255 NJ 10

The Whippany Motor Lodge complex was opened in 1965 and offered potential guests 72 units--later modifications brought the room count up to 100. The property was located on a highly visible parcel of real estate along I-287 at SR 10 between Morristown and Parsippany, NJ. When built, the Motor Lodge totaled 34,600 sq. ft., and was all electric.

Whippany came to be owned by Prime Motor Inns (later called Prime Hospitality LLC which was ironically acquired by the Blackstone Group in 2004). Prime which had owned the Howard Johnson brand from 1986 to about 1991 had been headquartered in New Jersey and owned or managed several Howard Johnson's in the Garden State. Remarkably long lived, the Motor Lodge remained a Howard Johnson until about 2002.

Architect's likeness : Kummerlowe Archive
Postcard postmarked March 12, 1967: Dan Donahue
Directory May 1-October 31, 1994: Dan Donahue

Above: A-frame Gate Lodge following 1990s ill-fated squaring off and stuccoization edicts.

Below: Gate Lodge hideousness after the property's conversion into a Wellesley.

Photographs August 25, 2005: Eric Paddon

Above: Original circa 1965 guest building (modified with stucco embellishment, removed ground level sliders, and new balcony railing).

Below: Guest building addition probably built during the 1970s featuring abbreviated balconies and patios (shown stuccoed and modified).


Left: Following its Orange Roof days, Eric Paddon noted that Prime spent between $2 and $3 million to convert the HoJo's Motor Lodge into a unit of its now defunct Wellesley Inn brand.

Below: By the latter 2000s the former Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge came to suffer from an identity crisis--what was it? An Econo Lodge or perhaps an America's Best Value Inn?

Photograph June 2010: Phil Edwards
Photographs August 25, 2005: Eric Paddon
Photographs June 2010: Phil Edwards

Higher: Still somewhat true to form as recently as 2005, the former Restaurant maintained it original porcelain roof tiles and front main entry.

Above & Lower: By 2010 the Restaurant continued to offer Asian cuisine but had been further modified with a side entry and new roof. Note too the stuccoization or replacement of the Arizona Cactus Stone landscaping wall across the front of the eatery.


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