When you’re out and about enjoying a drink at local downtown bar, The Bellhop, did you know that you’re right next door to one of Orlando’s historic landmarks? The Angebilt Hotel, at the northeast corner of Wall Street and Orange Avenue, still holds sway in 2023, even though the hotel hasn’t been in business for 40 years.
Image: Interior of The Bellhop
Source: The Bellhop Instagram
The 11 story brick building was built by Joseph F. Ange and designed in the Twentieth Century Commercial style by Murray King, Florida’s first registered architect. King modeled the hotel after the Pennsylvania Hotel in New York City.
A brochure of the hotel showed that it included a lobby, lounge, dining room, solarium/spa, meeting rooms, parlor, and bridal room. The hotel also had a barber shop and a rooftop deck with a view of downtown Orlando. The 250-room hotel was once considered the only fireproof building in the city. In 1952-53, a single room with a bath cost between $4 to $8, a double room with a bath cost $7 to $12, and a suite cost $15 to $20.
The view of downtown from the Angebilt Hotel, circa 1925.
Source: JGCPranks via Pinterest
Its history is dotted with financial struggles, natural disasters, celebrities, and changes, but the building holds steadfast at 37 N Orange Ave. The hotel opened on March 14, 1923. By May, Ange had sold his interest in the hotel and by June 1923, the owners filed for bankruptcy. In 1944, the rooftop deck was destroyed by a hurricane. In 1961, Pepsi-Cola hosted a reception to celebrate the opening of a new bottling plant in Orlando. Among those attending the fuction was Academy Award-winning actress Joan Crawford, who was married to the company’s CEO, Alfred Steele (deceased by 1961). In 1983, a fire in the ballroom damaged the top two floors of the building, which never opened as a hotel again. In the 1990s, the Orange County Courthouse used the building temporarily.
Image: The Angebilt in the 1930s and in the 2010s.
Source: Orlando Retro blog
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