The lost hotels of Toronto
The recent loss of the building that housed the Empress and then later the Edison Hotel at Yonge and Gould got me wondering about Toronto's other formerly grand but now inevitably lost hotels. While the Royal York, King Edward and Gladstone hotels continue to fulfill their original purpose, there are loads of structures around the city -- like the one at Yonge and Gould was until a few days ago -- that were once part of the hotel landscape that now house an assortment of other businesses. And, not surprisingly, there are plenty of other former hotels that were knocked down as the city expanded.
The original use of some of the remaining buildings is easy to identify in some cases, but more often than not, modifications over time have obscured the fact that they used to be places of accommodation (rather than restaurants or retail outlets). As such, a little trip down memory lane might offer a timely reminder of how lovely some of these buildings were and how important they remain (in the cases where they haven't already been demolished) to the city's heritage.
Some of these structures are in a sorry state, and it'd be fitting tribute to the old Empress to ensure that a similar fate doesn't befall them. For more information and additional images check out Toronto History on Flickr, which has links to Google Street View links that illustrate what these hotels look like today or what has replaced them. Lead image of the Rosedale Hotel (Yonge just south of Scrivner Square, still standing).
Empress/Edison Hotel (Yonge and Gould, destroyed by fire)
Alexandra Hotel (demolished in the building of Nathan Phillips Square)
Walker House Hotel (Front and York streets, demolished)
Barclay Hotel (Wellington and Simcoe, demolished)
Hotel Falconer (King and Spadina, still standing)
Imperial Hotel (Dundas just east of Yonge, still standing)
Hotel Municipal (Queen near Bay, demolished)
Union Hotel (Queen near Bay, demolished)
National Hotel (King and Sherbourne, still standing)
Quigley Hotel (Danforth in between Woodbine and Main, still standing)
Shamrock Hotel (Southwest corner of River and Gerrard, demolished)
Hotel Sheldon (southeast corner Victoria and Richmond, still standing)
Ocean House Hotel (At the intersection of Queen/King/Roncesvalles, still standing)
Scholes Hotel (864 Queen St. West, demolished)
Broadview Hotel (Broadview and Queen, still standing)
Rossin House / Prince George Hotel (King and York, demolished for the TD Centre)
Dominion Hotel (Queen and Sumach, still standing)
Heydon House (St. Clair Ave. West and Old Weston Rd., still standing)
Queen's Hotel (site of the current Royal York, which it was demolished to build)