Odd location, you might think: Why build a gigantic hotel in the middle of nowhere? This bucolic setting surely was too far off the main drags to attract business. In a way, that was the case - decades before, when the spot was owned by the city's first resident. (Although if he was the first, why didn't he own everything? Why a city instead of a fiefdom?) But by the time construction was begun in 1884, the neighborhood wasn't exactly the sticks. Why, they even had streetcars! And the fact that the hotel's investors were led by the fellow who ran the street car company had nothing to do with that.

Yes, a pleasant country retreat, this place. Right?