The saga of the Imperial Hotel exemplifies post-war growth in
Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, construction began in 1917 and
was completed in 1922. The hotel endured the 1923 earthquake, which destroyed
The property on which it stood demanded more profitable use. The hotel was too small and in need of many repairs. It closed its doors on November 15, 1967 and was demolished in 1968. This was a sad occasion for me. I'd been a frequent guest starting in 1939, and the press conference for our opening at Takashimaya was held there in 1962.
The building that replaced it has seven hundred and seventy guest rooms instead of two hundred seventy. Including the adjacent tower, the Imperial Hotel has now over one thousand guest rooms. Such is progress.