Bangalore provided a choice of very good Hotels and Paying Guest Homes. Although there were a limited number of Hotels in Bangalore, paying guests were accommodated in Homes run by mostly retired people. Charges to guests varied according to the locality and situation of the home or Hotel. The class was also rated by the cuisine and accommodation available. The City had Hotels and Homes for visitors and paying guests to suit the poor, middle class, as well as the rich, and most fastidious. Some were situated close to Clubs, Institutes, and places of amusements, where a guest could get all the gaiety he or she required, while others were Homes for those who need some rest and want quietness. Some of the Hotels that existed in the late 1920's are outlined below, with a brief description of the type of Hotel or Guest House, the cuisine, and perhaps for a few maybe even the rates of that day!! We are talking of Rupees, Annas and Pies ... we are going back into time 70 YEARS back .... Sad, but true, perhaps only The West End Hotel still exists and maintains some of it's earlier memories!! I have been going around the City trying to locate the remains of these Hotels and Homes that would have had a lot of Tales to Tell within their walls if they did exist still!
The West End Hotel
This Hotel, situated in "High Ground" stands in extensive grounds in the best part of Bangalore, within easy reach of both railway stations (City & Cantonment). The main block, Villas and Cottages comprising the Hotel accommodated over 50 guests. The rooms were said to be comfortably furnished, each with a separate bathroom fitted with English Baths (Tubs) and running water. The Hotel had a separate Dining room ( was also open to non-residents), a Billiard room, a Lounge, and spacious verandahs which were separate from the living rooms but connected with the main building by a covered way. There are two tennis courts in the grounds, and the Golf Links and Race Course are immediately adjacent. The catering was said to be comprehensive and excellent, the daily supply of fresh produce being the special feature!! Proprietors were Messrs. Spencer & Co., Ltd. Madras, Telephone No.81, Telegrams, "West End" Bangalore. Today this Hotel is known as "The Taj West End Hotel"!
Lavender's Hotel (earlier The Cubbon Hotel) was a First Class Hotel under expert European management, and was situated opposite the General Post Office and Central Telegraph Office. It had spacious grounds, Tennis courts, Grill and Bar rooms, with comfortably furnished suites of rooms and fine airy verandahs. Scrupulously clean throughout. Noted for cleanliness and comfort, and acknowledged the best food in Bangalore. The Managing Proprietor was Mr. J. Lavender, No.4, Cubbon Road. Today there is no building facing the GPO that can be linked to this, instead there is a large compound that is used for storing cable drums, the name stone on the wall reads "Fairdawn". It could have been the area where the snorkeled Visveswaraya Centre building (designed by the famous Charles Correa ) stands.
The Central Hotel
Was a First Class Hotel situated centrally at No. 13, St. Mark's Square. This was a real classy hotel, and existed till a few years back. The hotel was run as Sree Raj Bar & Lussie Restuarant. The compound extended once upon a time to M.G., Road, now the building of Paragon Jewels occupies the North, CMC Building on the West, and the Lussie Restuarant on the East, behind Bwring Institute. A hugh construction is coming up in the compound. Across the Kusturba Road on the West side is the Cubbon Park Police Station and Museums. When the program "Circurama" first came to Bangalore in the '60's, courtesy of the USIS, a cement floor was prepared (with a dismantable dome), in this compound, after the dome was dismantled, the open floor was used as a skating rink by the kids for many a year. (In the old days, the real skating rink was at the junction of Museum Road and Church Street, and coming onto South Parade, now Berry's Hotel occupies the site, and a few other Offices and buildings, Pubs, and Premier Book Shop).
Lavelle Park Hotel
Was a Select Hotel centrally situated and very near to the United Service Club (Bangalore Club or BUS Club). Open, airy, and spacious rooms. Excellent Cuisine.
The New Cubbon Hotel
Was a Select and up-to-date Hotel very centrally situated in a Select locality. It had a very large garden compound, spacious rooms, and served an excellent cuisine. Entirely European owned and managed, at No.5, Cubbon Road. The remains of the beautiful building still exists as a godown for the Telegraphs, and the Cable Durms are just dumped in the compound. The building belonged to Mousa Family and was known as the Mousa Lodge. The compound stretches from Cubbon Road on the South and Infantry Road on the North. The Annexure to the Hotel is also standing, and carefully looked after by Mrs. Leslie Wilson. (There is a building, between the Petrol Bunk and All India Radio [AIR] owned by Kodhay's for their Offices, which has a name stone on the wall that reads "Cubbon Lodge" there is also one further down the road near The Windsor Manor before Cunningham Road that bears a name "Abshot"! AlR also has an old building on it's premises). An advertisment of 1883 found in the
Was a Select Hotel and only for Parsis. Centrally situated and near to Commercial and Business Houses, Post and Telegraph Offices, and places of amusement. Excellent accommodation and kept a good table. Conveyances were available at all hours. Located at No. 29, Infantry Road.
The Prince Hotel
Situated in the best locality in Bangalore. Near to the Race Course, Cubbon Park, the General Post Office, and Central Telegraph Office. Accommodation was excellent, and a good table kept. Charges were moderate. It proclaimed reduction for guests staying over a long period. Situated at High Grounds.
Some of the "Homes" that provided Paying Guest Accommodation .....
If one was to be centrally situated and near to everything, in close proximity to Shops, Schools, Clubs, Institutes, Churches, as well as places of amusement, all within eight minutes walk to the place you wish to get to, and yet so near home - a well appreciated Home for paying guests. Accommodation was restricted and limited. Single room with board Rs. 240 a month for a married couple, and proportionate rate for a single person. "Those desiring to stay for less than a month will be charged Rs. 5 per head per day!". It was run by Mrs. E. Greatorex, No. 3, St. Mark's Square. There is also a house named "Strathmore" on Rest House Road.
Two minutes walk from South Parade , and situated in spacious grounds. With excellent cuisine and splendid, large, bright, and airy rooms comfortably furnished. Very close to everything and places that matter. For accommodation, one had to apply to Mrs. W. Rush, No.20, Museum Road.
A Select Home for paying guests. Centrally situated. Bright, airy and spacious rooms. Boasted of an excellent cuisine. Near to the United Service Club. Rs.300 a month, inclusive, for a couple occupying a suite of rooms, and Rs.170 a month, inclusive, for a single person. Accommodation when it was available could have been had exclusively of board at reasonable rates. A dozen racing stables and garage was also available for a moderate rent. It had a beautiful and spacious ground, and was run by Mrs. E. Tingey, No. 7, Sheshadri Road.
Was a Refined and Select home for paying guests, also centrally situated with good rooms. Moderate terms with an excellent cuisine. It was praised by many a visitor for it's cuisine, general amenities and above all made them feel an "Absolutely Home Away from Home"! Was managed by Mrs. A. Klyne, at No.2, St. Mark's Road.
A Select and comfortable home for paying guests near the United Service Club, Schools, and places of amusement. Accommodation was restricted. Run by Mrs. H. Bloomfield, No. 7, Residency Road.
Located absolutely centrally within 5 minutes walk from Business and Commercial Houses, places of amusement, Banks, Churches, Mysore and British Government Offices, Post and Telegraph Offices, Parks, in fact from all places one would have liked to visit. It was the Home for comfort, with Electric lights and hot baths. It had bright airy single and double rooms with private entrances and separate bathrooms attached. It had a Library with all classes of literature. Good Pheatons and Cars available day and night. Laundry on the spot. Individual tastes in cuisine catered for. It had a special rate for large families and children for a protracted stay. One could get details about accommodation from Mrs. C.S. Cline, Managing Proprietress, Cline's Home for Paying Guests, Tasker's Avenue, Tasker Town.
One would look this place if one wanted quietness, with open surroundings, enjoying good air for health, but also being close to Shops and places of amusement. A couple had to pay Rs.200 a month and proportional charges were made for a single person. For a family desiring to stay by themselves, a cottage with two rooms, bath, verandah, and kitchen was available at Rs.35 if unfurnished, and Rs.50, if furnished, per month. Particulars could have been had from Mrs. W. Taylor, No.4, Magrath Road.
This was a recognised Home for children, very centrally situated. Special care and attention was given for the care and looking after of children. Children of various denominations wee accommodated. Children were safely conducted to school and back. Charges were moderate and based on the number of children from each family. Parents who desired a holiday were also accommodated at special rates. It was run by Mrs. M.A. Turnbull, No.27, Brigade Road.
Was said to be a refined and comfortable Home for paying guests facing the Parade. A healthy spot, and near not only to Churches as well as places of amusement, but in close approximity to Russel Market and Commercial Street, the then chief shopping centres of Bangalore. Rates were Rs.4 per head per day or Rs.100 per month. Had no objection to young children being take in. Particulars could have been had from Miss. Edith M. Smith, No.21, Cubbon Road.
"Sunny View Lodge"
Supposed to have been a quiet and comfortable home for paying guests, close to schools, shops and places of amusement. Good table kept. Terms - Rs.2 per head per day. Children below 12 years of age charges at half rates. Particulars could have been obtained from Mrs. J. Bates, No.3, King Street, off Richmond Road. (This place is not to be traced .. the oldest building on the read today is a set of twin houses built in 1932!!).
"de Burgh Villa"
A refined Home for paying guests where the comfort of a person is the first consideration. Situated very near to All Saints Institute, Baldwin Schools (both boys' and girls') and Richmond Park. Terms Rs.100 a month for a single person and Rs.180 a month for a couple. Children charged according to age. Particulars could have been had from Mrs.F. de Burgh, No.4, Alexandra Street, Richmond Town.
Was situated in a good locality and open surroundings. Every possible comfort was offered for guests, and it kept a good table. Near to Baldwin Girls' School and Richmond Park. Rs.4 per day for a single person, and Rs.7 per day for a couple. Straight and Overstrung German and English pianos were available on hire or out-right sale. Mrs. H.J. Staggs, No.7, Richmond Road.
"Home For Parsis"
No.40, Infantry Road, was the only private Home in Bangalore for Parsis desiring to visit Beautiful Bangalore on a holiday. It was very centrally situated and had comfortable rooms. A good table was kept, and charges were moderate. Accommodation was limited and restricted. Particulars could have been had from Mr. P. Fradoon.
A comfortable Select Home. Close to Cubbom Park, Post Office, Schools, Shops, the Bowring Institute, etc. Terms - Double room Rs.8 per day. Single room Rs.4 per day. Particulars could have been had from Mrs.H.B. Adams, 3A, St. mark's Square.
Was situated in a large garden compound and very central. Electric lighting and water taps in bathrooms. Comfortable and adequately furnished rooms. Private conveyance available for hire. Terms were said to be as moderate for a brief or protracted period as is consistent with good food, comfort, and clean accommodation. European hosts were Mr. and Mrs. James Laing (former Proprietors of the Palace Hotel, Puri, B.N. Railway), No.20, Infantry Road.
Near to Business and Commercial Houses and centrally located, close to Post and Telegraph Offices, Cubbon Park, the Race Course and places of amusement. Charges were varied and moderate according to the rooms provided. Good table kept. Carriages and Cars available at all hours. Particulars could have been had from Mrs. F. Arnold-Jones, No.11, Cubbon Road.
Was a quiet refined and comfortable Home for paying guests very centrally situated. Hardly two minutes walk from South Parade. Terms were very moderate. Full particulars could have been had from Misses E & H. Walter, No. 1, Church Street.
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