Corner of Robson & Seymour Street by Mariken Van Nimwegen, illustrating a row of stately apartments that would inevitably see a tower take their place. To paraphrase Chuck Davis, “the building was known as the Orillia Block, and it was built by William Lamont Tait in 1903. Tait would also go on to build one of Shaughnessy’s most imposing mansions, the 18-room Glen Brae, on Matthews Avenue, as well as the best apartment building Vancouver had seen in 1907, the Manhattan at Thurlow at Robson.” The Orillia was torn down in 1985. This black and white illustration is from an original colour drawing, seen in the book Vancouver Ink Images of a City from 1990.
UPDATE! Here’s some more info on the tenants of Orillia House, via Michael Kluckner:
From Ivan Moldowan, Vancouver: Someone told me that you sketched or painted a picture of a old wooden rooming house that used to stand on the Northwest corner of Robson and Seymour streets in downtown Vancouver. [It was demolished in 1985.] The building, named the Orillia, had a number of stores, including the once famous Sid Beech’s Mexican food restaurant, on the ground floor. My interest in this is because, for many years in the thirties and forties, my grandfather occupied the corner store, 601 Robson, which was a combination pool hall and cigar store. As I was born in the west end in 1936, I spent many years hanging around my grandfather’s store, and bothering all the merchants in Blackburn’s market across both streets. The barbershop that stood between 601 and Sid Beech’s was run by a Mr. Evans, who cut my hair until he retired. (At that time, I then went to another barber, Mike Principe, (brother of well known barber and fight promoter, Al Principe) who had the barbershop in the basement of the building at the Northwest corner of Robson and Granville.
See this link for more info, including the 1944 “wartime rationing” menu from Sid Beech’s Vancouver Tamale Parlour.
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