It may be on the market, but for the time being the Fairmont Royal York is still the grande dame of Toronto's hotels, and this week marked the Front Street landmark's 85th anniversary. The Royal York opened its doors on June 11, 1929, and in the nearly nine decades since then has hosted countless heads of state and celebrities, ranging from Queen Elizabeth II (who loves the place so much she gave it a great big clock for the lobby) to James Brown (no word on whether he felt good when he left). More recently, the hotel expanded its guest accommodations to the roof; in addition to the rooftop garden's three beehives (named—no, seriously—the Honey Moon Suite, the Royal Sweet and the V.I. Bee Suite), the Royal York has installed a Bee Hotel, providing tiny guest suites for pollen-drunk solitary (i.e., non-hive-dwelling) bees. And while the Royal York may be one of the biggest hotels in town, it's also home to one of the smallest bars; just the place for a celebratory birthday cocktail.
Have a look back at one of Toronto's grandest old hotels.