Evidence of hotels and the hospitality industry have been recorded as far back as biblical times when Mary and Joseph arrived in Bethlehem during the census. As the Bible depicts, Mary and Joseph were refused accommodations because there "was no room at the inn." Since the beginning of time, people have traveled for commerce, religion, family, health, immigration, education and recreation.
The word "hospitality" comes from the Latin root meaning "host" or "hospice." The first hotels were nothing more than private homes opened to the public. Most, unfortunately, had poor reputations. Under the influence of the Roman Empire, inns and hotels began catering to the pleasure traveler in an effort to encourage visitors.
The first inn located in America was recorded in the year 1607 and lead the way with many other firsts in the hospitality industry. The first publicly held hotel (the City Hotel) opened in New York in 1792. The first modern hotel (the Tremont) opened in Boston in 1809 and the first business hotel (the Buffalo Statler) opened in 1908.
From there a surge of hotels flooded American and the rest of the world with prominent names such as Radisson, Marriot and Hilton.