Monroeville complex was opened in 1973, and featured a modern
high-rise 289 room Motor Lodge, along with its Restaurant,
Cocktail Lounge, and disco. Built near a Pennsylvania Turnpike
Interchange, the site served travelers as well as locals
and became a landmark and social hub.
and owned by a colorful figure, the complex's origins began
in 1960 when Al Monzo, an excavation contractor, bought
the 13 acre parcel of land that the Monroeville HoJo's was
built on. Although the site was adjacent to one of Pennsylvania's
most heavily trafficked intersections, it was low land not
well suited for any building development much less a Motor
Lodge and Restaurant complex. Thus over the years and without
proper permits, Monzo used the spoils from his excavation
jobs to create the prime real-estate where his HJ was sited.