Built in lavish Victorian style in 1886 atop Bacon Hill, the Raymond Hotel was the most regal feature on the skyline in the San Gabriel River Valleya sundown silhouette of the wealth and prominence that had coalesced in the Pasadena area. It became the base of activities for Eastern tycoons’ families enjoying the balmy Southern California climate, even fostering the development of the winter mansions on Orange Grove Avenue. After the original 200-room hotel with 80 chimneys burned down on Easter Sunday in 1895, the second 300-room Raymond Hotel opened in 1901. The pioneering orange groves on the sprawling grounds gave way to a golf course. Pres. Theodore Roosevelt and Charles Chaplin are just two examples of the early-20th-century celebrities who stayed there. This visually stunning collection of images is a mere sample of the vintage professional photography that exists of South Pasadena’s iconic landmark.
About the Author
Rick Thomas has authored three books in the Images of America series: South Pasadena, South Pasadena’s Ostrich Farm, and The Arroyo Seco. Featuring rare photographs and artifacts from the author’s private Raymond Hotel collection, the largest of its kind in the world, this book benefits efforts to commemorate the hotel and the man who built ittwiceWalter C. Raymond.