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The Admiral Hotel Mobile, Curio Collection by Hilton

The Admiral Hotel Mobile, Curio Collection by Hilton

The Admiral Hotel is an Art Deco jewel in the heart of downtown Mobile. A top rated hotel in Mobile for over 75 years. In fact, growing up I knew it as the Admiral Semmes. Now it has been renovated and added to Hilton’s Curio Collection.

The art deco style provides an attractive backdrop for photographs. The gold surrounding their chandelier and the lobby staircase are particularly popular.

About this Venue

The admiral boasts 156 guest rooms and nine meeting rooms. The largest room set up is a 3,400 square foot space, with a total event space of 6,755 square feet. The Crystal Ballroom can hold 300 guests.

The ballroom can be divided into three sections. Section A offers 880 sq. ft. and holds 150 guests. Section B is 1,000 sq. ft. and serves 150 guests, while Section C is the largest of the divisions with 1,480 sq. ft. and comfortably fits up to 250. The Cove is a smaller setting, holding only 60 people within its 1,120 square feet. Those are simply capacity numbers for a reception. A banquet, rehearsal dinner or other event would possibly serve fewer people.

I think it is important to have different options for your reception space. That way a couple can make sure they have a space that is best suited for their particular event. A room too small could make your rest too crowded and uncomfortable however a room too large will make your event seem empty and possibly cost much more to decorate.

When staying at the hotel

There are two restaurant options. Corner 251 is an industrial style coffee house with homemade scones. They also serve handcrafted sandwiches at lunch and later in the day offer tapas plates at happy hour. For dinner, you can have an intimate experience at the small restaurant, Launch, for an upscale urban dining experience.

When staying at the Admiral Hotel, every guest will enjoy the free Wi-Fi, fitness center, the option of pet friendly rooms, and a pool area. Couples like getting ready at the admiral on their wedding day because of its Art Deco style and clean lines. The guest rooms and suites have a simple elegant decor. A favorite picture spot is in front of the gold chain that surrounds the chandelier. This spot is accessed on the second floor and is a backdrop that gives images a very Gatsby feel.

The convenient location is another feature that makes it attractive for wedding couples as a getting ready space and a location for their guest to stay.

Who was Admiral Raphael Semmes and why is the hotel named after him?

It turns out that Rafael Semmes holds a rather than prestigious spot in naval history. Born in Charles County Maryland in 1809 he entered the Navy in 1826. He also studied law while remaining in service. After the Mexican war where he served in the Gulf of Mexico he moved and started a law practice in Mobile Alabama. In 1855 he was promoted to the rank of commander and assigned to lighthouse duties in 1861, when Alabama secession prompted him to resign from the U.S. Navy and adhere to the Confederacy.

While serving the Confederacy he began a career of commerce rating that is without equal in American naval history. After being appointed a commander in the Confederate Navy in 1860 wine Rafael Sims was sent to New Orleans to convert a small steamer into the cruiser CSS Sumter. After that, he made many successful runs through the federal blockade, captured merchant vessels, and skillfully alluded pursuing Union warships.

Semmes was so successful and accomplished that he actually has some books written about him. The Wolf of the Deep: Rafael Semmes and the Notorious Confederate Raiders of CSS Alabama is a biography about his many exploits. Beyond that, it includes many diary excerpts that paint a detailed picture of life on a ship during that point in history. A synopsis describes it as:

“The electrifying story of Raphael Sims and the CSS Alabama, the Confederate raider that destroyed Union ocean shipping and took more prizes than any other raider in naval history." (Fox, S. (2009). Wolf of the Deep: Raphael Semmes and the Notorious Confederate Raider CSS Alabama. United States: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.)

While all of his naval accomplishments have earned him a rightful place in naval American history, his association with the Confederacy is probably why his name was removed from the hotel. The timing of his exploits meant that Raphael Semmes was seen as a pirate by the Union. At the end of the Civil War, he was briefly imprisoned and during that time he worked as teacher. Upon returning to Mobile, he pursued a legal career until his death in 1877.

Contact Information

To learn more about hosting your event at The Admiral, you can view their website here. Feel free to call them at (251) 432-8000 or visit the hotel located at 251 Government St, Mobile, AL 36602.

If you'd like to know more about how I would create gorgeous photographs at The Admiral, you can send me a message here.

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