Historic Kelowna Motels: Stays with a Story

a large wooden house sitting on top of a lush green hillside next to a stone wall and a forest

Journey back in time to Kelowna's hospitality history, where each motel tells a tale richer than the last. We invite you to explore the stories etched in the walls of Kelowna’s historic motels, places that are more than just a night's stay but a passage to a bygone era.

Royal Anne Hotel (1905-Present)

In the bustling streets of downtown, the Royal Anne Hotel stands as a sentinel of history. It began its journey in 1905 as the Palace Hotel, a name that evoked elegance and grandeur. Under the ownership of John Milligan, its original 35 rooms and 3 floors welcomed guests from near and far. In 1929, a significant transformation took place when local businessmen renamed it to the Royal Anne, inspired by the locally grown cherries.

Yet, not all was smooth sailing. The hotel suffered a devastating fire in 1971, which led to its closure and subsequent rebirth in 1975. Today, the Royal Anne is more than a hotel; it’s a statement to resilience, offering visitors a perfect mix of history and modern comfort. Within its walls, you'll find tastefully furnished rooms and suites, each offering a window to stunning views of the city, mountains, or Okanagan Lake. Steps away from the waterfront promenade, the hotel serves as a gateway to Kelowna's exciting downtown life.

Eldorado Arms (1926-Present)

The story of the Eldorado Arms is one of charm and intrigue, beginning with its construction by the Countess Bubna of Austria in 1926. Born Irene Blair in Scotland, she married Count Franz Bubna of Austria and brought a touch of European elegance to Kelowna. The hotel, with its English-style architecture, became the epitome of sophistication, attracting guests from all walks of life.

In a dramatic twist of fate, the hotel was moved by barge in 1989, only to be engulfed in flames a month later. Suspected arson cast a shadow over its story, but like a phoenix, the Eldorado Arms rose from the ashes in 1990. Today, renamed Hotel Eldorado, it continues to be a beloved social hub, hosting everything from weddings to dog shows, and maintaining a special place in the hearts of Kelowna residents.


Each of these historic motels offers a unique window into Kelowna's past, revealing stories of resilience, transformation, and community. They are not just buildings but keepers of history, inviting us to explore and appreciate the rich tapestry of Kelowna's heritage.