The Alexandria Hotel at 501 South Spring Street became Los Angeles’s first five-star luxury when it opened on February 12, 1906. It also served as the city’s main social center from 1906 to the end of 1920. The hotel appears in Haunted by History Vol. 1.
I’ve included a few photos of the hotel through the years. Check back often because this page is still under construction.
The Alexandria Hotel, shortly after it opened in 1906.
NO WONDER SHE YELLED
(The Los Angeles Times, January 20, 1907)
New York Man Sinks His Teeth In His Wife’s Nose During a Family Quarrel
A guest at the Alexandria Hotel took offense at the length of his wife’s proboscis yesterday and attempted to bite about one inch from it.
A family quarrel, starting in a room on the seventh floor of the hotel, the identity of the principals of which the management of the hotel will not divulge, was the cause of the row. The guests had been quarreling throughout the day, as the clerks in the lobby noted, but the finale occurred in the seclusion of their room.
About 3 o’clock in the afternoon loud cries were emanating from the room and the clerks investigated. “Mrs. John Smith” was found bending over the bed holding her face. Blood was streaming from between her hands. The husband was bending over her and trying to repair the damage, but was repulsed by the wife. This much the clerks saw and then they called a physician.
To the doctor the wife said that her husband had bitten her nose, following a family quarrel. The husband avowed up and down that the woman had fallen against a corner of the bed and that he had not attacked her. The doctor repaired the damage the best he could and the management of the hotel requested the guests to seek other quarters.
The officials of the hotel refused to divulge the names of the guests, at first denying that the “scrap” had occurred. It is stated, however, that the principals were well-known easterners and that the husband was a banker in the city of New York.
The Gentlemen’s Grill at the Alexandria Hotel in Los Angeles opened around 1911. I believe it was located on the Mezzanine Level in what used to be the original ballroom area of the main building. Boxers, athletes, and film stars patronized the small eatery in the 1910s. A few females demanded to be served there, too.
Interior of Feagans & Company, c. 1917-1918.
Harry Houdini and Beatrice celebrated their Silver Anniversary inside the hotel’s Rose Ballroom on the second floor on June 22, 1919. Also in attendance is Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle and wife Minta Durfee. A more pristine version of this photo can be found in my book HAUNTED BY HISTORY VOL. 1. The ballroom, located on the Mezzanine floor, is one of the haunted areas inside the former hotel. Today, it is incorrectly named the “King Edward Ballroom” given that King Edward never visited the hotel.
A Los Angeles Examiner banquet inside the Rose Ballroom in 1921.
A publicity stunt for the Sixth Annual Great Western Live Stock Show in 1931.
25th Installation Banquet and Ball of the Pangasinan Association of Southern California, Inc., Feb. 20, 1950. The event took place inside the Franco-Italian Dining Room (now the Palm Court). Los Angeles Public Library 00005947
The Franco-Italian Dining Room, aka Palm Court, in the 1970s.
Smog on Spring Street in 1986. The Alexandria Hotel is in the distance.(Photographer: Chris Gulker / LAPL 00060080)
The Alexandria Hotel’s (haunted) Rose Ballroom in the early 2010s.
Find out more about the Alexandria Hotel by grabbing your copy of Haunted by History below!