The Inn's Restaurant provides a variety of settings for a small group or larger setting depending on your needs. The downstairs bar and restaurant has an intimate setting for after the theater parties and meet the actor events. The winter season for the Abbeville Opera House begins in mid-October each year and runs to the summer professional season with offerings each weekend. Special combo rates are posted on the home page for theater/weekend room and dinner events.
The Belmont Inn celebrated its 100th year in 2003. This majestic beauty (formerly The Eureka, and later The Belmont Inn) was the conception of Mr. P. Rosenburg and other distinguished gentlemen of Abbeville in 1901. During 1902, plans for the hotel became a reality and city fathers awarded an Atlanta firm the $25,000 construction contract.
The local paper had high hopes for the planned hotel as evidenced by this August 20, 1902 account: "The new Hotel will be one of the best in this part of the country, with all the new and modern conveniences. Baths, barber shops, offices, elegant dining rooms, beautiful parlors, inviting sitting rooms, and bedrooms that would make the weary sleep their lives away, are part of the new Hotel. The cook rooms and the pantries will be such that no poor meals will be furnished to anybody."
By April 29, 1903 the paper reported, "Skilled workmen are now busy putting the finishing touches on the Eureka, which will be one of the finest hotels in the up-country. The plastering has been done, the windows are being put in, and other work is looking to an early completion of the work progressing nicely... There is no discounting the elegance and completeness of the structure, and great credit is due to the promoters of the scheme whereby Abbeville will take front rank as a hotel town."
A formal opening was held on August 19, 1903, "signalized by a sumptuous dinner served at 7pm which could not have failed to have satisfied the taste and cravings of the most pronounced epicure." The newspaper account goes on to describe "beautiful parlors and a spacious dining room fairly ablaze with scores of incandescent lights..."
During the early years, The Eureka was a center of activity housing railroad visitors and travelling troupes that played The Abbeville Opera House. However, starting in the '50s, the Eureka began a gradual decline and finally closed in 1972. The structure stood defunct until 1983, when a new owner purchased it and began the process of extensive restoration. Christened The Belmont Inn, the new grand opening was celebrated on November 23, 1984.
The City of Abbeville
Abbeville was settled in 1758 by a group French Huguenots. In 2008, Abbeville celebrated its 250th anniversary. The City was officially incorporated as a municipality within the State of South Carolina on December 20, 1832. Since then, Abbeville has experienced many exciting and turbulent events. The city played a key role during the Civil War, and the legacy remains pristinely preserved. Abbeville is called the "Birthplace and Deathbed of the Confederacy", because it was here that Jefferson Davis made some of his most important decisions as President of the Confederacy. On what is now known as Secession Hill, the meeting which launched the state's secession from the Union took place on Nov. 22, 1860. Five years later in 1865, Jefferson Davis and his cabinet decided to dissolve the Confederacy at the Burt-Stark Mansion, a stately home right off from Abbeville's historic Court Square.
The Abbeville Opera House, historic downtown, and the Square are significant attractions in the region. Over 35,000 patrons attend sellout shows at the Opera House each year, making it the State's Rural Drama Theater. Abbeville's Victorian setting attracts thousands of visitors each year who combine an afternoon and evening of shopping, dinner, and then a show at the Opera House. Tourists are also drawn to the City's significant historic district which boasts dozens of restored homes and businesses, and by Abbeville's claim as the designation of the "Birthplace and Deathbed of the Confederacy."
The region is home to a number of state parks, as well as the Sumter National forest. Also nearby in the Savannah River Basin are Lakes Thurmond, Russell, and Hartwell, operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers, Lake Greenwood, and Lake Secession, which is owned and operated by the City of Abbeville. Located thirty miles to the south of Abbeville is Savannah Lakes Village, a resort community with 4,000 home sites. Abbeville is located within a fifty-mile radius of major highways, including Interstates 26, 385, 85, 185, 20 and 520. In addition, Abbeville has US and State highways and railroad lines, making the city very accessible.
Abbeville is part of the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor which stretches from the coast near Charleston to the mountains of Oconee County. Abbeville has a rich heritage of textiles that continues to this day with its two thriving Sage Automotive plants. We are also blessed to have a number of other industries that have chosen to make the area home including Prysmian Cable, Flexible Technologies, and Thermaflex. The area also has several post-secondary education choices including Erskine College in nearby Due West and Lander University located in Greenwood. Piedmont Technical College is a two-year public institution in Greenwood with a satellite campus here in Abbeville. The new Abbeville Area Medical Center is located within the City, and boasts state-of-the-art facilities and medical care. Also located within 30 minutes of Abbeville is Self Regional Hospital in Greenwood.
In January of 2008, First Lady Laura Bush designated Abbeville as a Preserve America Community. This initiative recognizes those communities that demonstrate they are committed to preserving their cultural and natural heritage. The City of Abbeville was honored by this prestigious award and we will continue to make sustainable historic preservation a priority.