The Olympic Hotel is shown in this photograph shortly before it was demolished in 1989. Constructed in 1906 as the Palace Hotel, the impressive three-storey brick building boasted the province’s first rooftop garden.
Along with the Hotel North Vancouver and the St. Alice Hotel, the Palace Hotel welcomed visitors and holiday-goers to North Vancouver’s booming Lower Lonsdale neighbourhood in the early 1900s.
When ferry service between Lower Lonsdale and downtown Vancouver was cancelled in 1958, the neighbourhood started to decline. Many longtime businesses were closing, and the once elegant St. Alice and Olympic hotels (as the Palace Hotel was known after 1949), became not so elegant beer parlours.
What are your memories of the Lower Lonsdale and Shipyards District in the 1970s to the 1990s? The NVMA is collecting photographs and stories for a future exhibit that examines how this neighbourhood became a vibrant public place after decades of urban decline. Contact NVMA curator Karen Dearlove at 604-990-3700, ext. 8005.
For more information about the history of the North Shore and to learn about the new Museum of North Vancouver opening in late-2020, visit nvma.ca and sign up for the museum’s e-newsletter at bit.ly/35MWr83.
Currently, the Archives of North Vancouver at 3203 Institute Rd. in Lynn Valley is open by appointment only. Contact: email@example.com.