Unusual Angle on Hotel Vancouver #2

CVA - Van Sc P63.5 - [Looking southeast from Howe Street and Georgia Street] 1929 Leonard J Frank photo.

CVA – Van Sc P63.5 – [Looking southeast from Howe Street and Georgia Street] 1929 Leonard J Frank photo.

This perspective affords us photographic time travellers an atypical angle on the second (and best, in my opinion) of the Hotels Vancouver (Swales, 1916), of its northern neighbour, the York Hotel (Honeyman & Curtis, 1911) – which was demolished in 1968 for Pacific Centre mall – and bits and pieces of several other structures (e.g., the second Vancouver Courthouse (Rattenbury, 1912), which became the Vancouver Art Gallery in 1983 appearing in the bottom right corner of the image). This incarnation of the HV was demolished in 1949 after serving as home for difficult-to-house veterans during and after WWII.

Where was this image made? It was pretty plainly made from the north side of Georgia, likely closer to Hornby Street than to Howe St, most probably from the Medical-Dental Building (McCarter & Nairne) – opened in 1929, the same year as this photo was made, and demolished in 1989. The Devonshire Hotel (also McCarter & Nairne, 1925) – demolished in 1981 (the HSBC bank replaced it on the site) – is really the only other contender for the honour, but it was a relatively shorter structure than the Georgia Hotel (next door and east of the Devonshire) – of which we can spot the near upper corner in the lower left image of the image, meaning that the camera was angled downward relative to the Georgia, and that would have been impossible from the rooftop of the Devonshire. It had to be taken from the relatively taller Georgia Medical-Dental building. For a helpful visual illustration of the differing heights of these buildings, see this image.

The photo also allows us helpful perspective of the rooftop garden of the former Hotel Vancouver. For a couple of nearer views, see here and here.

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