The formerly magnificent but now demolished USS Flagship Hotel was on what is now the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier off of Seawall Boulevard, the city of Galveston, Galveston Island, Texas. The 7 story 225 room hotel was built on the historic Pleasure Pier structure entirely over the Gulf of Mexico, albeit very close to shore. It was a popular destination in Galveston that withstood many storms.
Following the destruction caused by Hurricane Carla, Houston banker James E. Lyon leased the pier from the city, signing a 40-year contract. In 1965, he opened the seven-story, 225-room U.S.S. Flagship Hotel, whose location on the pier, entirely over the Gulf of Mexico, made the record books as the only such property on the continent.
The lease rate was US$185,000 annually for forty years. The unusual structure was the first of its kind and made for an unforgettable Galveston landmark. It extended nearly a quarter mile out over the Gulf of Mexico and was seven stories tall, with 225 rooms. There was also a swimming pool and restaurant that offered an incredible view of the Gulf.
The structure was severely damaged in 2008 by Hurricane Ike causing its closure.In 2009, the owner Landry’s, Inc., which acquired the hotel from the Galveston Council in 2003 for $500,000, advised the Galveston city planning commission it would demolish the hotel and build an international amusement park on the pier. In February 2011, the historic USS Flagship Hotel on the pier was demolished and the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier was constructed and opened in 2012.