Legendary Al Pacino Got His Start at This Iconic Massachusetts Hotel
It’s a cultural legacy sitting on top of a hill in Provincetown on Cape Cod that has witnessed an incredible history of presidents, actors, and writers. Get this: according to Provincetown Magazine, Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, and William Howard Taft all stayed at The Gifford House.
It’s been through a variety of owners since the 1800s as a top hotel and restaurant. In the 1960s, it became home to an experimental theatre company called Beverly Bentley’s Act IV, where writer Norman Mailer launched his works along with other playwrights. Of course, needing actors to perform, the unknown Al Pacino stepped on stage, getting his start between there and the Boston theatre industry.
Just a couple of years later, Al was in the blockbuster film The Godfather. This 33-room hotel and restaurant eventually turned the acting school into a bar and has since added two more.
However, after more than 30 years, the small business owners of the historic Gifford House –Jim Foss and Harvey Wilson – decided to sell. As you can imagine, the bids coming in were from large investment groups and private equity firms who wanted to gobble up property in the quaint, popular beach town.
Don’t worry, you can wipe that brow because Jim and Harvey weren’t going to part for the money. They instead waited for someone who would honor the history and commitment that the Gifford House means to Provincetown.
Enter small business owner Steven Azar, who decided to buy it and keep that local culture alive, as well as The Gifford House Inn itself. According to Provincetown Magazine, after some renovations, the spirit of the Gifford House lives on and will continue to be one of the jewels of the independent culture and business community in P-town.
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