The Hotel Del Coronado, a travel industry icon, is celebrating the big 1-2-5.
Completed in 1888, the Del (as its affectionately known) is an example of the wooden Victorian beach resort architectural style. Back in the day, it took seven days to reach the hotel from the east, which is where most of its wealthy clientele originated. (It even had its own rail spur to accommodate the private coaches of the wealthy.)
The hotel was originally billed as a fishing and hunting resort, though it also included all the amenities that gentlemen and ladies of leisure would expect: men and women's billiards facilities, bowling, croquet, swimming, boating, bicycling, archery, golf, and fine dining. Special rooms were also set aside for smoking, reading, writing, cards, chess, and music -- you know, in case that chess game got really rowdy. Of course, it was also a remarkably modern retreat, featuring electric lights, shared telephones and elevators. Oh, and a newfangled fire alarm and state-of-the-art fire fighting equipment.
Particularly interesting are the additions of a school for the children of wealthy patrons (who would stay for months at at time) in 1913, and a tent city in the early 1900s to accommodate clientele from the new, emerging middle class. (It lasted until 1939.)
The hotel achieved icon status not only for its longevity, but thanks to appearances in productions like "Some Like It Hot" and "I Love Lucy," as well as hosting a rotating roster of celebrities and presidents.
Check out some vintage photos of the Del below.