What's New

First Baptist Church
added September 25, 2020
First Baptist Church
108 years separate these two photographs, and the church looks as good as it ever did. Soon a 60-storey megatower will rise above it, right where the Hobbit House used to be. (Image source City of Vancouver Archives).

El Cid Hotel
added September 25, 2020
El Cid Hotel
The building at 340 Cambie street has had many names over the years. Its life started in 1898 as the Commercial Hotel, when this corner of the city was a magnet for the riches of the Klondike Gold Rush. In the 1970s it was transformed into the El Cid, boasting  crushed velvet wallpaper and heart-shaped waterbeds. Today it has a heritage designation due to some of its Richardsonian Romanesque architectural features, although it's a run-down SRO hotel. Sandwiched in between the hotel and the massive Flack Block is Vancouver’s smallest building, known only as Rose Brothers Barbers, after one of its tenants over its 125-year-old life. (Photo courtesy City of Vancouver). 

Pennsylvania Hotel
added September 25, 2020
Pennsylvania Hotel
Originally named the Woods Hotel when it was built in 1906, the Pennsylvania offered luxury suites for weary travelers for two or three dollars a night. Time took a heavy toll on the building until a multi-million dollar renovation in 2008 transformed it into a home for low income residents, as well as a designated heritage site. And it’s haunted. Happy endings all around. Side note: I was having trouble lining up the turrets in the two pictures and wondering why the recent one seemed so much bigger than the original. This page explains things.

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