The Original King Edward Hotel in Halifax (1903 - 1946)

 

On August 3rd 1903, the headline in the local Halifax newspaper read "Handsome New Hotel Is Opened For Business... North End of the City Now Boasts of One of the Best Hostleries in Canada - The King Edward is a Fine Structure...".

The article goes on to talk about the fine workmanship..., of the plate and art glass..., the hardwood floors and the rugs..., and the mahogany trim. "The building is fitted throughout for both gas and electric light. At the north end of the office is a handsome quartered oak mantle with British plate mirror; the lower part being inlaid with tiles and fitted with hammered brass. The ladies' entrance is toward the north end of the building and the reception room is to the left of the oak and plate glass doorway. The parlours are on the first floor, in front of the building, and from the windows a splendid view can be had of the harbour, the lower part of the City and the Dartmouth side."

"The hotel is heated by hot water and a great deal of attention has been devoted to ventilation and lighting, in which respects Mr. Wilson, the proprietor, thinks the King Edward is second to none in Canada. Its accommodation capacity is about 150. There are 60 bedrooms, but many of them are doubles. All the rooms are well lighted and furnished, fitted with return call system electric bells, and everything about the place is modern and up to date."

In a book written about the City of Halifax in 1908, the author states that the King Edward Hotel at 222 and 224 Lockman Street offered rates of $2.00 and $2.50 upwards. In September 1905, the King Edward was honoured to have H.R.H. Prince Louis of Battenburg as a guest. Over the years, many famous names were guests of "The King Edward".

The original King Edward was later destroyed by fire on December 29th 1911; which began at approximately eight o'clock. "Two men were injured and damages were estimated to be between $75,000 and $100,000. The entire fire department, assisted by the Dartmouth department, sailors from the Niobe and the military fought with one of the most costly and spectacular fires in recent years in Halifax". The King Edward was later restored and again destroyed on December 6th 1917 during the Halifax Explosion. The building was used by the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War and again severly damaged in 1945 during the second Halifax Explosion.

On August 5th 1946, an article, entitled "Landmark Doomed", in the Halifax Mail read in part; "The Navy's decision to demolish the old King Edward Hotel building spells doom for a well-known landmark. The King Edward has had a varied history. It was a railway and commercial hotel in the days when North Street Station was the Halifax terminus of the Intercolonial Railway (remember the railway radio operator who sent the message to the passenger train minutes prior to the Halifax Explosion), when lines of cabmen tried to outshout each other for fares at the station entrance. It looked down over the Dockyard during two wars and saw the ships of the world's navies coming and going on their several occasions. From its windows, observers have seen the old Niobe lying at her jetty, the crews marching on board the "four pipers" turned over to Canada by the United States, and the launching of Canada's first home-built destroyer, H.M.C.S. Micmac. The building itself has suffered from misadventure. It has been battered by two explosions and once ravaged by fire."

The buildings that, today, make up the King Edward Inn were either renovated extensively, or newly built in 1988.

In the year 2000, we attempt to offer the same comforts and hospitality that the early purveyors of the King Edward Hotel offered to the traveling public, and we are committed to ensuring that your experience is as warm and pleasing as those who traveled in the early part of the last century and stayed at "the King Edward".

 

 

 

To make a reservation, call anytime from North America to 1-800-565-5464 or send us an e-mail message (preferred). Locally, please call (902) 484-3466 [4-THE-INN].

We're open 24 hours a day.

 

 

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