Years ago I (Clyde Smith, President of YourToyTrains) worked for a large pharmaceutical company. While making account visits on a business trip to Albuquerque, NM, I decided to drive west in my rental car over the weekend to the La Posada Hotel in Winslow, AZ. I knew the hotel, once part of Santa Fe Railway's famous "Fred Harvey" chain, had been fully restored. Just a touch of the 1930s in the middle of the Arizona Desert. I also knew the hotel, built for Santa Fe passengers(still an Amtrak stop), was immediately adjacent to the Santa Fe Railway Chicago-Los Angeles Main Line (about 100 trains per day).
However, it was a last-minute decision and I did not have a reservation. I knew there were other motels in Winslow so I was not worried about lodging. After a long day enjoying the beauty of New Mexico and Arizona I arrived at the La Posada Hotel at about 6PM. The desk clerk, as I was prepared to hear, told me the hotel was booked and there were no rooms. A bit disappointed, I headed for the front door to find a motel. A female manager who overheard me mention to the desk clerk I liked trains flagged me down as I reached the exit.
She told me: " Sir, we have one room available, but we usually don't use it. It is right by the tracks and noisy and with all the trains that come by we feel it would be too much of a nuisance". My eyes beamed as I booked the very much trackside room in this lovely hotel. Needless to say a great meal in the hotel's restaurant, an evening spent watching a very busy Santa Fe, and a fellow railfan (He had the other trackside room! There were two!) made my visit to the La Posada one of the best hotel visits I ever had.