History of the Lodge at Port Arrowhead

Serving the Lake of the Ozarks area for over five decades

Born in St. Louis, C.C. Ziegler joined the Navy in 1943 and returned to Missouri in 1946. In 1947, he married Margaret (Mickey) Pilgram and they had 10 children. In 1951 Clarence Ziegler started Ziegler Investment Company of Clayton.

In the early 60’s Mr. Ziegler and a friend began talking about building a Holiday Inn. They looked for a site at several places, such as the Virgin Islands, St. Thomas, and the state of California. The Lake of the Ozarks came into the picture after attempting a vacation retreat for their large family at Lake of the Ozarks. However, things were so crowded that they were not able to stay at the Lake and had to find accommodations in a nearby city. When returning to St. Louis it was decided to look for a site that would become the Holiday Inn at Lake Ozark, Missouri.

Ground breaking for the Holiday Inn began and the hotel eventually opened in 1965. Mr. Ziegler bought out his partner and maintained ownership of the Holiday Inn during that first year of operation. The hotel’s opening was attended by the entire cast of The Beverly Hillbillies (starring Buddy Ebsen, Irene Ryan, Donna Douglas, and Max Baer, Jr.), a popular CBS American situation comedy TV Show from 1962-1971.

In 1966, the complex saw the addition of 50 more rooms. The restaurant burned in 1970 and was rebuilt, along with a new meeting room and another swimming pool.  In 1972, another 50 rooms were built.  Expansion of the resort’s meeting space facilities, as well as the recreation area, eventually followed.  Mr. Ziegler stayed actively involved in the renovation and construction, trying to improve the resort each year.

In 1999, the Ziegler family sold the hotel to Van Tuyl Enterprises, owned by Kansas City businessman Cecil Van Tuyl who also owned Port Arrowhead Marina located adjacent to the resort. (Currently, the marina is owned and managed by MarineMax out of Clearwater, Florida).

Several more ownership changes occurred after the turn of the millennium.  In 2016, over fifty years after its original opening, the hotel was purchased by business partners Jared Johnson and Mike Pagliai.  The partners had a vision of transforming the property into a modern, business-appropriate lodging facility that also offers a uniquely comfortable family-friendly environment during the summer months and weekends year-round.  The hotel was closed for ten months while undergoing the comprehensive makeover and reopened in the summer of 2017 as the 145 room Lodge at Port Arrowhead.  All plumbing, electrical, and mechanical infrastructures were updated or replaced, state-of-the-art Wi-Fi and high definition television programing added, and a new modern building façade applied.  In addition, all guest rooms and public spaces were renovated with fresh comfortable finishes.  The Lodge at Port Arrowhead offers a resort-style indoor swimming pool, fitness center, playground, patio deck with intimate fire pit for social gatherings, two private conference rooms for hosting small meetings and events, and a breakfast bar serving a delicious assortment of complementary morning fare served daily in the lobby great room.

The Lodge at Port Arrowhead is now better than ever and has reestablished itself as a preferred Lake of the Ozarks hotel for business travelers and vacationing families alike.