#0179 Castro House


#0179 Castro House

Site information:

San Juan Bautista State Historic Park, 2nd and Washington Sts, San Juan Bautista


Plaque information:

State plaque shared with #180

Plaque text:

Castro/Breen Adobe and Plaza Hotel

The Castro/Breen adobe is associated with the early development and settlement of Mexican California. The adobe is an excellent example of blended eastern and western building methods first produced in Monterey to form the Monterey Colonial architectural style. The adobe served as headquarters and residence to Jose Antonio Castro, Commandant General of Alta California, and later to Donner Party survivors Patrick Breen and family.

The Plaza Hotel originated as a one-story adobe barracks and two-story guardhouse for soldiers protecting Mission San Juan Bautista across the street. After secularization in 1835, the building became a home and general store for the Anzar family. The building was rented and later sold to Italian immigrant Angelo Zanetta who added a wooden second story and opened the Plaza Hotel in January 1859. The hotel became noted for its fine cuisine and liquors. In the 1860s San Juan Bautista became a stop for seven stagecoach lines. The hotel welcomed travelers, business men, and traveling salesmen. When the New Idria quicksilver mine opened just to the southeast, even more patrons frequented the hotel.

Plaque placed by the Native Sons of the Golden West, the California State Parks Foundation, and California State Parks

Rededicated 2014, the 150th anniversary of California State Parks

OHP description:

In the 1840s the Castro House was built to house General José Castro's administrative office and his secretary. In 1848 Castro sold the house to Patrick Breen, survivor of the ill-fated Donner party of 1846, and the Breen family lived here for many years.

Registered 3/6/1935