Idaho Falls

December 2019 – Special Section: The I.F. Downtowner

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6 IDAHO FALLS MAGAZINE  NOVEMBER 2019 "This building stands as a worthy monument to the enterprise and industry of this community." So wrote The Times-Register newspaper on May 31, 1927, speaking of the Hotel Bonneville the day before it opened. The history of this monu- ment shows that the construction of the Hotel Bonneville was a uniquely community effort on the part of the Idaho Falls community. Construction of Hotel Bonneville The idea for a top tier hotel in the City of Idaho Falls was "the result of the pride of a number of people who wished to advance the community in the best way possible." The community wanted "the use of a strictly first class hotel, with adequate accommoda- tions and quality of service which would enable Idaho Falls, as a community, to invite public gatherings and conventions and to be prepared to take care of them in a way and manner, which would reflect credit on the community." The Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce went to work on this unlikely dream. Achieving the goal involved the use of a sys- tem of subscribing financial investment from community members. It also relied on the expertise of an investment brokerage firm, an architectural firm from San Francisco, and a manager with a background in run- ning the Hotel Utah in Salt Lake City. But most importantly, achieving this dream meant uniting of over 500 individuals and businesses in making financial invest- ments for the dream. Today the list of those 500 stockholders reads like the who's who in the history of the progress of Idaho Falls. But Historic gem finds new life in the heart of downtown BY LEE RADFORD Rebuilding the Bonneville STEVE SMEDE PHOTOS

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