A Timeline of Important Dates, People and Events in the More Than 134 Year History of Mount Dora’s Lakeside Inn
There have been a number of noteworthy dates, people and events for Lakeside Inn and Mount Dora since the establishment of this Historic Hotel more than 134 years ago.
CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGE
1882 – Several leading citizens, John Alexander, John and Annie Donnelly and Colonel John McDonald, feeling Mount Dora needed a hotel in order to attract visitors and facilitate the growth of the community, formed a partnership for the purpose of building such a facility.
1883 – The partners opened the new, two-story, ten-room hotel and named it the Alexander House, a simple design with a large veranda and constructed with termite resistant Georgia pine.
1884 – Miss Emma Boone, an experienced hotel operator and a bundle of energy, arrived from Boston to take charge of the Alexander House.
1887 – Train service was established into Mount Dora by the Sanford and Lake Eustis Railroad Company, in affiliation with the Seaboard Coast Railroad Network.
1893 – The partners decided to sell the Alexander House to Miss Emma Boone, and she then changed the name to The Lake House.
1903 – Emma Boone married George Thayer of Boston and the two formed the Lakeside Hotel Company. In the process, they changed the hotel’s name to Lakeside Inn.
1905 -The addition of a three-story section to south side of the original building was completed. 1905 – The rusticated stone walls with gate posts were constructed at the Alexander Street entry.
1906 – Another two-story section was completed, giving the Lakeside Building most of its current look. At the time, the veranda wrapped around both ends of the building.
1908 – Still more guest rooms were needed to accommodate the growing guest list, so The Gatehouse was built and featured several more guest rooms on each of two floors.
1909 – Emma Boone Thayer died and husband George continued to operate Lakeside Inn.
1910 – A very large two-story boathouse was built, featuring a club room and expansive viewing deck. This area would eventually become the original Kumquat Lounge.
1914 – The Sunset Cottage was built to accommodate the need for additional guest rooms.
1924 – Lakeside Inn is sold to long-time guest, Charles Edgerton, and his partners, Fred Wesley Wentworth, Archie Hurlburt and a group of 100 local investors.
1926 – Two ten-car garages were built, with additional employee housing on the 2nd floors.
1928 – An agreement was struck with the City of Mount Dora for the south section of Alexander Street to be privatized by Lakeside Inn.
1930 – A completed $250,000 renovation and expansion project saw the addition of the Gables and Terrace Buildings, a large swimming pool, a new lobby, dining room and the addition of formal landscaping.
1930 – President Calvin Coolidge and First Lady Grace Coolidge, arrived in mid-January for a month-long stay, following his retirement from office.
1935 – Dick Edgerton, son of partner Charles Edgerton, took over management responsibilities for Lakeside Inn.
1952 – The Kumquat Lounge was opened in the basement of the Inn, in the area that is now remembered as the Speakeasy.
1979 – Mount Dora and Lakeside Inn were selected as the site for the filming of Honky Tonk Freeway, a comedy movie from the Academy Award winning director, John Schlesinger.
1979 – Owner, Dick Edgerton, a long-time trustee of Berry College in Rome, Georgia donated Lakeside Inn to the school so Berry College could receive the financial benefit from its sale.
1980 – The Inn is sold to Richard Lee and Associates, who changed the name to Lee’s Lakeside Inn.
1984 – Richard Lee and Associates put the Inn up for sale.
1985 – Fewer than 90 days before a developer’s wrecking ball was to demolish the Inn, a group of investors headed by brothers Richard and Jim Ferrell purchased and undertook a major renovation of Lakeside Inn.
1986 – The Kumquat Lounge was relocated from the basement to the north end of the lobby and the name was changed to Tremain’s Lounge.
1987 – Lakeside Inn was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
1990 – The debt incurred during the renovation of the Inn proved too great for revenues to support, so the corporation was forced into foreclosure.
1990 – Lakeside Inn was sold at sheriff’s auction to James Barggren and John Dempsey.
2010 – Lakeside Inn was sold to current owners Jim and Alexandra Gunderson, who are in the process of restoring this Great Inn and preserving its 130 plus year history.