An Icon of Route 66

Roy's at Amboy

With it's distinctive sign and period architecture, Roy's stands out boldly against the barren landscape. The business operation began in 1938 and eventually employed about seventy people who ran the cafe, gas station, and motel. Amboy's population grew to about seven-hundred. Route 66 was The Road through the area until 1972 when Interstate 40 opened. Business at Amboy dropped immediately, and the town withered away.

There have been efforts to revive the cafe, and the photographs shown below were made when staff was on hand at the cafe and gas station. The kitchen has not been brought back to life, but coffee, sodas, and snacks are available. And souvenirs.

The motel consists of a series of cottages, and there is a larger motel building behind them which is fenced off. Access to the cottages is not restricted, and open doors and broken windows testify to years of neglect.

Visitors to Amboy enjoy a step back in time, and some will get a palpable sense of former active days there. Albert Okura is the current owner, and he hopes to fully restore the cafe and gas station. Many of us who visit support the business operation, and hope that restoration can continue and that Roy's will survive.

Roy's and The Shield Roy's Roy's Cafe Stepping Up Motel Interior A Long Journey Root 66 Beer
East and West Evening at Amboy

Images Copyright © Ed E. Powell
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