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Starlite Motel Mesa, AZ
AZ Other Motels | Starlite Motel | AZ Motels

 

Here's the marquee next to the motel office for the Starlite Motel in Mesa, Arizona. At this property right off the roadside, there are not just one but two fancy marquees.

 

Starlite Motel animated diver
Photo by RoadsidePeek.com

 

(Left) A view looking down Main St. for travelers entering Mesa from the east end of town.

 

Starlite Motel
Mesa, AZ
Photo courtesy Tony Craig

 

The Starlite Motel sign was designed in 1960 by late artist Stanley Russon and built by noted sign maker Paul Millet. According to azcentral.com, the 78 tall sign was commissioned to promote the motel's pool and has been featured in the sign industry's national trade publication Sign of the Times.

 

 

 

The swimmers (right) even still light up at night as the animated neon gives the impression of the swimmer diving off the top of the sign. There are four stages to the animated sign. The first three stages light up the three neon divers in sequence, with the fourth lighting up a blue neon splash.

Starlite Motel animated sequence
Mesa, AZ
Photo courtesy Nick Florio

 

Unfortunately, the Starlite Motel lost its animated neon diver sign in a thunderstorm on October 5. According to the Arizona Republic, the 50 year old sign was destroyed when a powerful wind gust sheared off a metal pole support.

The motel owner Minal Patel states the sign most likely will not be replaced due to funds required and Mesa's sign ordinance. It appears that yet another roadside treasure has become just a memory.

Here are photos of the Starlite Motel during better times.

 

The neon view traveling along Main St.
Photo by RoadsidePeek.com
The animated neon divers
Photo by RoadsidePeek.com
Day view of main sign
Photo by RoadsidePeek.com

 

Below are photos from October 9, 2010 of the fallen sign, courtesy of Nick Florio of NIck Florio Photography.

View of fallen sign and motel office
Photo courtesy Nick Florio
The sheared post
Photo courtesy Nick Florio
Fallen diver
Photo courtesy Nick Florio

 

Another view of the sign and post
Photo courtesy Nick Florio
Shattered neon letters
Photo courtesy Nick Florio
The fallen sign
Photo courtesy Nick Florio

 

UPDATE 11/13 : The Starlite Motel sign was restored and reestablished back to its familiar location in the parking lot. Photos to be added soon. 11-13

 

 

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© Copyright 1998-2013 Syd Nagoshi. All rights reserved. No portion of this document may be reproduced, copied or revised without written permission of the author.