LONE WOLF — Oklahoma Tourism & Recreation Department officials will unveil the newly renovated Quartz Mountain State Park Lodge at a grand reopening and ribbon cutting ceremony at the lodge today.
Although celebrating with a ribbon cutting, the lodge and restaurant will not actually be available for guests until July said Marla Cook, an official with the Oklahoma Department of Tourism and Recreation.
“We haven’t even had the lodge for a full year yet and this is what we’ve been able to do, which is just incredible,” said Director of State Park Standards Kalise Kriewall. “I mean this would have been an incredible feat even if we didn’t have a worldwide crisis in logistics.”
Quartz Mountain State Park and the lodge, which is in southwestern Oklahoma near Lone Wolf, returned to the Oklahoma State Parks system in fall 2020 after falling under the The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education had since 2001. The Oklahoma Tourism & Recreation Department immediately embarked on a $10.5 million renovation of the lodge, the department said in a press release.
“We’re really excited to have the lodge back,” Kriewall said. “Quartz Mountain is one of Oklahoma’s original seven parks, so getting it back gives us all of our original seven parks so we’re just really excited.”
The $10.5 million renovations touched many aspects of the lodge. Its grand entry has been expanded, although the high ceilings, exposed trusses and towering stone fireplace remain. A gift shop with a glass storefront has been added. The indoor pool has also been updated; it includes garage doors that staff can open when the weather allows.
The courtyard, Located behind the lodge, has a whole new look, Kriewall said. It now includes a fountain, grassy berms and other natural landscaping when before it was just a grassy area and a volleyball court. A shallow stream that children can play in runs through the area, and there’s a pavilion made of perforated Corten steel. There’s a new shuffleboard area, and fire pits situated around the courtyard provide gathering places for guests.
The lodge’s guest rooms have been completely refurbished with new carpet, bedding and other furnishings. The two existing suites have been transformed into premier suites, and eight more suites have been added. All 10 suites have kitchenettes, fireplaces and separate living areas.
A new restaurant, Swadley’s Foggy Bottom Kitchen, will open in the lodge next month. It will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, providing classic home-cooked dishes for park guests from a menu specially developed for the state parks. The restaurant will be open Wednesday through Sunday during the summer season and Tuesday through Saturday the rest of the year.
“This project represented an incredible amount of work done in a very short time,” said Jerry Winchester, executive director of the Oklahoma Tourism & Recreation Department, in a press release. “We are so proud of the efforts by (the construction and architecture firms)and by our Oklahoma State Parks staff to bring this lodge back to life. We can’t wait for Oklahomans and out-of-state visitors to come experience the new Quartz Mountain.”
Guests can reserve rooms at the lodge online at TravelOK.com/Parks. Prices range from $140 to $485 a night.
Quartz Mountain debuted in 1935 as one of Oklahoma’s original seven state parks. Much of its infrastructure was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the Great Depression. In the early 1950s, state leaders approved a bond measure to finance construction of a lodge at the park, and the first Quartz Mountain State Lodge opened in 1956 with 46 guest rooms. In 1978, the Oklahoma Arts Institute chose the park as its home. On Feb. 24, 1995, an electrical fire heavily damaged the lodge. A new lodge didn’t open until March 8, 2001. The lodge had been overseen by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education since 2001 before being returned to the purview of the Oklahoma State Parks system in 2020.