Queen Wilhelmina Lodge in Mena Arkansas
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High atop Arkansas's second highest peak, this
cloud-capped state park named for a Dutch monarch reigns above the Ouachita Mountains
just north of Mena, Arkansas.
In the late 1800's, a resort hostelry named Queen Wilhelmina Inn in honor of the Queen of the Netherlands was built on Rich Mountain by the Kansas City, Pittsburg and Gulf Railroad. Two inns have replaced the original "Castle in the Sky" - the latest is this park's focal point.
The lodge offers 38 guest rooms including two Queen's Rooms with fireplaces and two Regent's Rooms with spa tubs. Enjoy the Queen's Treasury Gift Shop. The Queen's Restaurant severs delicious Southern cuisine daily.
Situated on the Talimena Scenic Drive, a National Scenic Byway in western Arkansas, Queen Wilhelmina State Park stands out as one of the state's most scenic destinations. Surrounded by the Ouachita National Forest, the park reigns over the Ouachita Mountains from its perch high atop rugged Rich Mountain. At nearly 3,000 feet above sea level, this windswept mountain is Arkansas’s second highest peak. The natural beauty of Rich Mountain and the intriguing history of the park offer the visitors a vacation experience never to be forgotten.
Today’s modern lodge is the third inn to grace this same spectacular setting. The first inn, opened in 1898 by the Kansas City, Pittsburg and Gulf Railroad, was designed as a resort retreat for passengers on the line. The railroad spared no expense in constructing the luxurious hostelry of Victorian splendor known as the “Castle in the Sky.” Since Dutch interests largely financed the railroad, the inn was named in honor of the Netherlands’ young Queen Wilhelmina. In only three years, the inn closed.
The State of Arkansas operated the second Queen Wilhelmina Inn, modeled after the original, from 1963 until a fire destroyed it in the fall of 1973.
Today’s modern state park lodge was opened in 1975 to carry on this grand lodging tradition atop 2,681-foot Rich Mountain. Known as Arkansas’s “Castle in the Clouds,” Queen Wilhelmina Lodge commands an impressive view of the Ouachita Mountain Range and offers 38 modern guestrooms for year-round comfort, including two rooms with fireplaces and two featuring elegant spa baths.
The park is 13 miles west of Mena on
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