"Are we there yet?" Here is a classic slice of Americana---Playskool Familiar Places #480 Holiday Inn play set. Manufactured in 1974, this play set paralleled the roll-out of the interstate system in the United States. Each summer, families packed up their belongings and "hit the road" for two weeks. Many of these family stayed at family-oriented motels such as Holiday Inn. In fact, Holiday Inn was considered to be the "World's Innkeeper." This offering is 100% complete with all four flags, all six sign inserts, the playground mat, all of its accessories, and its original box. In my opinion, this play set warrants a VG++-EXC rating.
This play set resembles the Holiday Inns of the 1970's in construction. Consisting of two floors, the play set features a revolving door at the front entrance, a front desk to facilitate "check-ins," a restaurant with clear, sliding doors leading to the balcony, and two, hotel suites complete with their own fully equipped bathrooms.
In contrast to many of these sets, all of the floor lithos are present and their colors are bright and robust. They do, however, exhibit some creasing and bubbling on all three of these floor lithos. Most of the bubbles range in size 1/16" L x 1/16" W to 1/4" L x 1/16" W. The bubbles on the front lobby litho are somewhat larger: up to 1 1/4" L x 1/4" W or 2" L x 1/8" W.
The Restaurant and Front Desk wall lithos display some orange speckling throughout. This is due to some of the original glue seeping through the lithos. Lastly, the faux mirros in the bathrooms still retain their original glossy surfaces. The mirror in the lower level bathroom has come loose on the lower right hand corner. I will be re-securing this with a generous application of Rubber Cement so that it should not cause any future problems. All in all, I would deem the INTERIOR lithos as being in VG-VG+ condition.
As far as the EXTERIOR lithos are concerned, the room number lithos are fully intact on both blue doors. They, too, display some speckling. These speckles are blue in color and probably stem from the underlying glue seeping through the litho. In general, I would rate these lithos as being in VG++-EXC condition.
In general, the plastic surfaces of the Holiday Inn are devoid of any scuffs, abrasions, "dings," cracks, repairs, or discolorations. Their is one, faint black mark on the front pillar on the hinge end of the Holiday Inn. I'm confident this will come off during the cleaning process. The revolving door spins effortlessly and the sliding "glass" doors likewise move back and forth without difficulty. Other than a couple, incidental light scratches and a few scuffs, these doors are crystal clear. The latch and handle are free of any impediments. The words "Playskool" and "Welcome" are imprinted on the roof and outside each of the blue doors respectively. The only thing I can discern amiss is that the roof near the latch is slightly bowed. This may have been caused by a child leaning on the surfacer during play. There are no stress fractures and there is no danger of the roof cracking or breaking. Overall, I would rate the plastic base as being in NEAR MINT condition.
The set comes equipped with the following RARE or VHTF accessories:
1 HTF blue/red car with front and back seats and Playskool imprinted on the tires (NEAR MINT-MINT);
1 HTF red/blue car with front and back seats and Playskool imprinted on the tires (MINTY MINT);
1 RARE Holiday Inn sign (NEAR MINT--couple of pin-head size rubs near or on the lettering on one side of the sign; these are innocuous in nature and do not detract from the overall appearance of the piece);
1 RARE red circular table (EXC-EXC++--light surface scratches; these are only detected when you hold the table up within 3" of your eyes and rotate it in the light);
2 VHTF red double beds (NEAR MINT--MINT);
2 HTF light blue chairs (NEAR MINT--each has an "H" written on the underneath side of the chair; this should come off with minimal difficulty; once they are removed, these chairs will be in MINT condition);
3 HTF orange chairs (MINT);
1 HTF orange coffee table (MINT);
1 HTF light blue coffee table (EXC-EXC++--a couple of light surface scratches; hard to see);
1 RARE blue/white international or peace flag (NEAR MINT---minuscule rubs on the front edge of the flag);
1 RARE United States flag (MINT);
1 RARE Holiday Inn green flag (EXC+--light rubbing on the edge of the flag);
1 RARE Playskool red and white flag (VG++-EXC--some minor soiling on one side of the flag; some scratches and rubs on the other side of the flag);
6 EXTREMELY RARE double sided signs that can be inserted in the slot on the Holiday Inn sign (EXC++-NEAR MINT---all have darkened somewhat with age; most show some light creasing or minor edge wear; I'm being super "nit-picky" here; these are so rarely found that to run across them at all is a miracle; these are the original signs---not some reproductions);
1 RARE blue slide (EXC--one tiny scuff/scrape towards the bottom of the slide);
1 RARE blue/red swing (NEAR MINT--extremely minor wear on the back edge of the bottom platform);
1 RARE blue buffet table with litho (VG++-EXC--litho is 100% intact with a couple of bubbles and some speckling on the litho; once again, this is probably due to the glue leaching through);
1 VHTF blue restaurant "booth" with four imprinted table settings (NEAR MINT--few faint scratches on bench and back of bench seats);
1 HTF red restaurant "booth" with four imprinted table settings (EXC--one possible small melt mark on the bottom back edge of one of the booths);
1 EXTREMELY RARE blue maid's cart (MINTY MINT);
1 EXTREMELY RARE white sheep dog (MINTY MINT);
1 RARE blue suitcase (MINT);
1 RARE red suitcase (MINT);
1 RARE yellow bodied girl with blonde hair, an open mouth, and a collar and pearls (EXC-EXC++-some discoloration between the collar and the pearl necklace; have no idea what caused this or if it might come off during the cleaning process; this is the first time I noticed this; rest of piece in MINT condition);
2 HTF green bodied girls with blonde hair, open mouths, collars, and pearls (both MINT);
1 HTF green bodied girl with blonde hair, smile, flirty eye lashes, collar, and pearls (MINT);
1 HTF red bodied boy with brown hair, tie, and belt (EXC-EXC++--some roughness on the bottom side edge; I'm not sure but this may have occurred during the manufacturing process);
1 VHTF blue bodied boy with brown hair, tie, and belt (MINT);
1 VHTH African-American, red bodied boy with black hair, tie, and belt (NEAR MINT--couple of pin-head size indentations on right cheek and forehead; have no idea as to the origin of these; appear to be too small for a child's tooth); and
1 EXTREMELY RARE folding play board representing a swimming pool and playground (NEAR MINT--MINT---center crease is free of any tears, cracks, repairs; couple of scratches on the back side of the board).
The set also features its original box. This box demonstrates considerable wear (e.g. large sections where the lithos are missing, some major tearing, some rubbing on the lithos, one puncture, remnants of the original tape and masking tape along with residue from the same). On a scale from 1-10 with 10 being PERFECT, I would rate this box as a 3.0. It does provide a listing of all the component parts for future reference.
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