Rufus Roberts built the first White Sulphur Springs Hotel in the late 1880’s, which burned in 1900. In 1905, the hotel was reconstructed to included 165 guest rooms. Guests usually came by train to escape the humidity and heat of the piedmont and crowded cities. White Sulphur Springs lured 1000’s with its cool, fresh air, the vistas of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the dense natural scenery and the mineral-rich spring water.
Fire destroyed the hotel again before WWI but once again it was rebuilt. Stables, a rolling lawn for croquet and picnicing, woods for walking and exploring, and riding trails were crowned by a 2,000 square-foot latticed dancing pavilion with polished wood floors. During the early 20th century, the NC Symphony Orchestra would travel by train and perform on the front lawn near the dancing pavilion. Guests came from all over the East Coast, Europe and South America.