Then & Now
The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada is more than simply a grand luxury hotel. Since 1890, it has played a considerable role in the colourful history of Canada’s mountain West.
Historical Lake Louise
The original Lake Louise Chalet was built on the shores of Lake Louise in 1890. The chalet was a single level wooden structure consisting of a veranda, a sitting room, a kitchen and a bedroom. On a quiet day in 1892, with no one around, this original building burned to the ground.
During the spring of 1893, a second Chalet was constructed. During these early years, visitors to Lake Louise amounted to no more than 100 people throughout the summer. At the time, the only way to reach the Chalet was a three mile hike from the Laggan Station renamed later to Lake Louise.
The hotel went through two early fires and four architects. The main building you see today dates back as far as 1912.
Lake Louise is renowned as the birthplace of Canadian mountaineering. Between 1899 and 1954, generations of these Swiss mountaineers taught thousands of visitors and locals to climb and, later, to ski.
Contemporary Lake Louise
The ladies on the chandelier represent the wives of the Swiss Mountain Guides, who put candles in their windows so that a guide (namely their husbands) caught out at night, could find their way home. The four women point to north, south, east and west.
The Mount Temple Wing and Conference Centre opened in May of 2004 at a cost of $65 million. The carved murals above the doors to the ballroom show five important events in the area’s history.
The historic Victoria Ballroom was built in 1912 and was renovated in 2016.
We have been giving The Chateau regular face lifts to ensure that we are providing the best experience possible for our guests. Learn more about them.