In 1890, Small’s Hotel opened on Queen Street West, then a major transportation hub along the Canadian Pacific Railroad. In 1949, it was renamed The Drake Hotel and throughout the years, went through various states of disrepair as a “flophouse” (cheap lodging for seedy types) in the ‘70s, a disco called The Stardust in ‘70s-‘80s and something between a punk bar and a rave den in the ‘80s and ‘90s. When The Drake Hotel finally opened on February 14, 2004, it prioritized being a cultural incubator, having art and performance venues and spaces that constantly reimagine themselves like our rooftop Sky Yard. Since then, The Drake has helped to transform Queen West into a vibrant arts and culture hub while continuing to serve and be inspired by locals and travellers alike.
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