Photo: Sixties-era postcard of the Royal Alex, Manitoba Historical Society.
The Royal Alexandra Hotel was designed by Montreal architects Willliam and Edward Maxwell. When it opened in 1906, at the corner of Higgins and Main, the "Royal Alex" was a fine hotel, the largest in Canada and definitely palatial.
On the Manitoba Historical Society website, Susan Moffat Rozniatowski writes nostalgically of her first view of Frederick Sprotson Challener's murals. Depicting a variety of quintessentially Canadian scenes, including Fort Garry and the buffalo hunt, several of these were once displayed on the walls of the Royal Alex.
Sadly, after many years as the social centre of Winnipeg, it closed its doors forever in 1967 and was demolished in 1971.
The Tyndall stone lion heads that once decorated the portico were donated to the City and are now on display a few blocks from the old hotel site.