Grand Canyon’s Historic Red Horse Cabin Reopens for Overnight Guests

Thursday February 9, 2012

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. - Xanterra South Rim L.L.C., operator of lodges, restaurants and activities in Grand Canyon National Park, has completed restoration and rehabilitation of the "Red Horse Cabin," the oldest building at the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. The two-bedroom cabin is now available to overnight guests.

Built in 1890, the cabin was moved from the Red Horse Ranch in 1902 by local businessman - and later United States Senator - Ralph Cameron for use as a tourist hotel at the head of the Bright Angel Trail. From 1910 to 1935 it served as the Post Office for Grand Canyon Village.

At that time, the cabin was slated for demolition, but noted architect Mary Elizabeth Jane Colter intervened and convinced building owner Santa Fe Railway and concessioner Fred Harvey Company to remodel and restore the cabin for guest use. Colter incorporated the cabin into the Bright Angel Lodge complex along with several other cabins. The cabin was used as guest accommodations for several years but for at least the past 40 years has been used for storage.

"This is an exciting development for all of us who appreciate the history of Grand Canyon Village," said Jon Streit, general manager of Xanterra South Rim. "Our historic accommodations such as the Buckey O'Neill Cabin, Phantom Ranch and El Tovar are always among the first to be requested by our guests."

Located just a few feet from the Canyon rim, Bright Angel Lodge is a Registered National Historic Landmark.

Xanterra's engineering department, along with DL Norton Construction, was faced with the challenge of updating the cabin to today's standards of building and comfort while maintaining historical integrity. The National Park Service and the Arizona State Historic Preservation Office provided oversight for the project. For example, the roof was replaced by new cedar shingles that matched the existing materials, and flashing was treated to a weathered look. The crew paid special attention to the foundations and exterior hewn log walls by replacing and repairing mortar and chinking.

Architectural features such as the fireplace stone and brick work were kept as much intact as possible, and some plumbing fixtures were resurfaced. Existing light fixtures were cleaned and rewired to meet all current codes. The crew also worked on windows, flooring, painting, heating, interior walls, insulation, fire suppression/detection, case goods and soft goods.

The rate for the two-bedroom cabin is $340 per night. Reservations can be made online by visiting or by calling toll-free 1-888-297-2757 or 1-303-297-2757 from outside the United States.

Located just a few feet from the Canyon rim, Bright Angel Lodge is a Registered National Historic Landmark. Accommodations consist of 38 lodge rooms (some without a private bath), 49 historic cabin rooms (all with private bath) and three suites.

The lodge has a family-style restaurant open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and the Arizona Room features Southwestern cuisine for lunch and dinner. Bright Angel Lodge is also the check-in point for the world-famous Grand Canyon mule rides.