Ranch House Motel

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1950s postcard view of the Ranch House Motel
1960s postcard view of the Ranch House Motel

The Ranch House Motel was a 2-story, 52-room motel located at 2125-2129 7th Avenue South in Birmingham's Southside neighborhood.

The motel was built in 1952, boasting 52 air-conditioned rooms and an outdoor swimming pool. It was owned and operated by Bob and Carl Stapleton.

The Family Counseling Association of Jefferson County kept offices in the motel's east building in the 1960s. Anil and Smita Patel, incorporators of AKS Inc., were owners of the motel by 1982. They closed the motel for remodeling in 1983 and reopened it as a Hospitality Inn.

In the 2000s, the motel was the scene of at least two homicides. On October 12, 2002, a man was shot to death in a dispute over stolen money. On July 10, 2011 a man was killed in his room by blunt-force trauma. Gregory Chancey, a motel worker who had been a drinking buddy to the victim, eventually pleaded guilty to misdemeanor criminally-negligent homicide in that death.

The motel closed in 2017 and the site was marketed for redevelopment as a ground lease.

The motel's east building, occupied illicitly, was burned by arson on March 12, 2019. The fire also destroyed two neighboring businesses, Yum Yai restaurant and Chai Market, and another vacant building, the former 22nd Street Jazz Cafe. Two days later the west building, unharmed by the first fire, was also hit by arson.


  • Robinson, Carol (March 12, 2019) "2 alarm fire at vacant Birmingham hotel intentionally set, destroys 5 buildings." The Birmingham News
  • Koplowitz, Howard (March 14, 2019) "Vacant Birmingham hotel catches fire for 2nd time in 2 days; arson suspected in both fires." The Birmingham News