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F.M.Road 474 East of Boerne

HISTORY: This lovely old house, situated on the Guadalupe River, is ideally suited as a resort and guest ranch. The latest is the Guadalupe River Ranch which was developed in 1986 by Walter Starcke. See article in Express-News, September 7, 1986, p1-G. for story.

On Sunday, February 4, 1996 there was an article on page 6K of the San Antonio Express-News written by Jacque Crouse extolling the news about the Guadalupe River Ranch. She says in the article, "Built in 1929 by the president of Alamo National Bank, the 8,000 square-foot lodge with hardwood floors and stone fireplaces had been at various times the home of actress Olivia de Haviland, a turkey farm and a brothel."

On September 4, 1996 the San Antonio-Express staff writer Roy Bragg discussed the Ranch in his Main Streets & Back Roads.He says," A former turkey farm and juvenile delinquent facility, the ranch has become a destination of choice for corporate retreats and vacationers. What once was an unappealing assortment of shotgun shacks is now a cozy collection of cabins, five-star hotel rooms and killer scenic vistas."

On November 3, 1996 an article was written by Lelsie Hicks for the Express-News, introducing Ed McClure, a former hotel executive with Phoenix Hospitality Group, Inc., who had joined the staff of Guadalupe River Ranch, adding his expertise in hotel management.

Again on March 9, 1997 an article "From Ruins to Rejuvenation", by Ron Bechtol appears in the San Antonio-Express. He mentions the art work done on the ranch in the paragraph, "Guadalupe Handprint Fabrics utilizing designs by partner Eron Howell and artists such as Brad Braune, was established as the core enterprise. It functioned for seven years until the demands of the property overwhelmed the idea. At this point Starke decided to turn Guadalupe River Ranch into a retreat for executives and intellectuals in need of a spiritual jump-start."

Before the Guadalupe River Ranch was in operation we find the house was used for a school, at least for a short time. There is an article in the Boerne Star on September 2, 1982 heralding the opening of a new school. The teachers were to be Cathy Rhea and Anna Flatten.

Before the opening of the school we find that the property was known as Golden Fawn Guest Ranch. The Boerne Star printed an announcement of an Open House for Golden Fawn Guest Ranch in September of 1974.

When the ranch was a turkey farm it was owned by the Ammann family. Other uses named above are not substantiated in the Library files.

Source: Boerne Public Library files, February, 2000.

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