Category Archives: Hotels then and now

Photographs of hotels as they were then and as they are now.

Once Metropolitan, now Cosmopolitan

The Cosmopolitan, scaffolding free, May 2018 Tucked away off Kasr al-Nil Street in Downtown Cairo, the Cosmopolitan has always been an overlooked hotel. It has never featured large on the tourist map, so it has usually been blessedly free of … Continue reading

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So farewell then, Continental-Savoy

I was in Cairo two weeks ago when the demolition crews were moving at uncommon speed, rapidly erasing the building that was the Continental-Savoy from its Downtown site of over 150 years. There has been a sizeable hotel here on … Continue reading

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For Sleeping Or ‘Purposes’

I received an email last week with the above image attached. The sender bought the item in an antiques shop. It measures 137 by 97 mm and appears to be made of brass. The text seems to be advertising the … Continue reading

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The Nile Hilton Incident

Cairo’s Zawya Cinema announced this week that Swedish-Egyptian director Tarik Saleh’s The Nile Hilton Incident, which was set to screen as part of a festival programme, is not going to be shown after all. The cinema cited ‘involuntary circumstances’. In … Continue reading

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Back at the Windsor

Photo by Jacobs Cindi In the 1990s, when I was lucky enough to be paid to travel and write guidebooks for the likes of Lonely Planet, people would occasionally ask, ‘Where’s your favourite place in the world?’ The answer was … Continue reading

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A hospital in a palace

During World War I the British military command saw Egypt, its industries, businesses and people as resources to be drawn upon to assist the war effort. The tourist industry was not exempt. Hotels around the country were requisitioned, as military … Continue reading

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Then and Now: the National

When it opened on 1 November 1905, the National hotel had accommodation for 250 guests, making it bigger than any other hotel in Cairo at the time save for Shepheard’s. It had a prominent on location on Suleyman Pasha Street … Continue reading

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Then and now: the Majestic

The English novelist EM Forster was 36 when he arrived in Alexandria in November 1915. He had already had four novels published, including A Room with a View and Howards End. A pacifist by inclination, he had decided to avoid … Continue reading

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The New Hotel

I recently managed to acquire the interesting photo, above. If it looks familiar but at the same time something seems slightly off, that would be because you might recognize the view but not necessarily the hotel. The scene is Cairo’s … Continue reading

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Then and now: the Eden Palace

Although it was hotel for only around 20 years, and the last guests checked out 93 years ago, the name of the Eden Palace lingers in Cairo – it’s there in large letters on the pediment of a corner building … Continue reading

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Filed under Hotels then and now, Lost Egypt