The Lola Montez House — at 248 Mill St. — was originally constructed in 1851 for the office of Gilmor Meredith’s Gold Hill Mining Co. Lola Montez, who became famous as a dancer (“The Spider Dance”), actress and courtesan, purchased the home in 1853. She built a cactus garden in the front yard — thought to be among the first in California. The current structure is a duplicate of the original, built from a sketch.
The deal is expected to close at the end of July.
GVDA Executive Director Howard Levine confirmed the planned acquisition on Friday. The Downtown Association will join the Grass Valley/Nevada County Chamber of Commerce in the building, Levine said.
“This will help build synergy between the city’s tourism program, the Downtown Association and the Chamber,” Levine told me.
The seller is the Pioneer Association.
The money comes from restricted funds that were donated to the Downtown Association by Arletta Douglas, a longtime county resident who helped restore the Holbrooke Hotel in the ’70s and ’80s.
Douglas has a memorial star placed in her honor in downtown Grass Valley for “outstanding service and contribution to the city.”
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