Greetings, y'all. Today the city was hosting Doors Open Winnipeg, an annual free event in which citizens can either explore on their own, or take guided tours of historic buildings around town. My pal and I had hoped to see either an old jail or the regal Fort Garry Hotel, but both said buildings were host to massive lines. It was a bit disappointing not being able to have the time to explore these buildings, but it was still nice to see the large crowds out. It's awesome to see so many people taking advantage of this event, and appreciating the architecture of their home.
We did, however, have time to visit the Marlborough Hotel (1914), was was still a pretty cool treat. I only included a couple shots of the interior, because I'm not a great indoor photographer, and my real aim was to sneak a couple shots of our historic Exchange District from the upper floors. The windows were dirtier than your sister, but don't blame me.
Without further ado:
The bottom four floors of stonework were completed by a collaboration of four Italian families in 1914. The red brick above was added in 1935, and the white addition of more hotel rooms to the left was slapped on in 1960:
The shots looking outside betray the filthy windows:
This is perhaps 1/4 of the Exchange District, the largest and most intact collection of buildings from this era in North America:
A portion of the ever expanding Health Sciences Centre in the background:
The Chicago of the North, she was called:
The slightly overcast sky didn't help the atmosphere of these shots. This shit's grainier than a 1960s photograph out of some old magazine:
The dreadful surface area parking lot below should really be the site of some kind of Flatiron Building. Ya know, all triangly an' such:
Looking north towards the metro's main black and Chinese communities, which are anchored by a newly regenerated Centennial Park:
The Odeon Theatre (since called the Walker Theatre) is now called the Burton Cummings Theatre, in honour of the lead singer from Winnipeg's band The Guess Who. For whatever shame this lends the city, please remember that Neil Young got his start here too:
The brown highrise to left reminds me of the brilliant flick Fargo. "They have everything! It's a Radisson!" To the right is the MTS Centre, named after the provincial telecom conglomorate and home to the NHL's Winnipeg Jets, and behind that is the Manitoba Hydro Building (2009), which at the time was Canada's most energy efficient building. Not sure if the record still stands:
Did I mention that the windows were filthier than a drunken contortionist playing Truth or Dare? Anyways, across Portage Avenue from the hockey arena a crane is aiding construction of a highrise hotel. To the right of that ("behind it") will be another highrise condo project. Things are lookin' up:
Some of the windows were covered with chicken wire. Is this necessary? Really? Anyways, here's Portage and Main:
Attempting to get the wire out of the frame was hard, and I'm talkin' harder than a priest at a playground, so I gave up. Here 'tis, wire and all:
Still pretty dirty, but some of the windows were worse:
Meh. Might as well give you a couple interior shots. On mescaline during the tour, I assumed this was a Sky Octopus. I was wrong:
Allegedly a ballroom, but I didn't see even a single ball in the entire building:
Not sure why I included this one, but there ya go:
This clock was shipped from England at the turn of the century and.... I disn't really pay attention to the rest:
A bright room in an otherwise pretty dimly lit building:
The stained glass was shipped from NYC. The entire room is original, except for the tacky electric chandeliers:
Well, there you have it! A tiny taste of Winnipeg from her classic era, viewed from horribly filthy windows on the 8th floor. Thanks for lookin'. Word.
P.S. - I noticed that the title should read "Peek" instead of "Peak," but I'm not savvy enough to know how to correct it.