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Construction for what is now known as the Thomas Center began in 1906 and was completed in 1910. It was named Sunkist Villa. Major William Reuben Thomas, his wife Kathryn and their five children made the impressive estate their home for 15 years. With the addition of a three story wing, the family home was remodeled into a Mediterranean Revival-style hotel with Italian Renaissance decorative motifs. The Hotel Thomas was opened on January 10, 1928. In 1968, the family decided to sell the property. The new owners leased the buildings and grounds to Santa Fe Junior College for seven years. In 1972 when a rezoning request went before the citys planning board to raze the hotel, the neighborhood residents began a resistance movement. The site was listed on the National Registry of Historic Places in 1973 and was purchased by the City of Gainesville in 1974. The original house was restored and designated as the cultural Thomas Center...CONTACT Carla Hotvedt at SILVER IMAGE® Photo Agency and Weddings 352.373-5771 or