St. Patrick’s Day 1949. It’s the grand opening of the Shamrock Hotel in downtown Houston, Texas. Texas oilman Glenn McCarthy honors his Irish roots and builds one of the most grand hotels in Houston. Certainly one of the most famous swimming pools!
The pool is one of the biggest outdoor pools of it’s day. It featured rounded corners, a width of 142 feet and a length of 165 feet. Big enough for motorboats to pull water skiiers! There were two diving platforms as well as a thee meter and a ten meter diving board. The pool was home to swim clubs and swimming events for years.
Opening day was a party! 50,000 people gathered outside hoping to get a chance to walk the halls with the rich and famous. Or, hang out by the pool on the warm March afternoon.
The Hilton Hotels Corporation acquired the Shamrock in 1954 and and operated it until it was demolished in 1987.
The Shamrock Hotel was located at Main Street and Holcombe, where the Texas Medical Center is today. The hotel was demolished to provide more parking for the thriving Medical Center area.
The video below tells the story of one of America’s truly grand swimming pools!