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Nelson Hotel

9 Main Street, Carberry, Manitoba, R0K, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2007/06/12

Primary elevations, from the southeast, of the Nelson Hotel, Carberry, 2007; Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, 2007
Primary Elevations
Archival view, from the southeast, of the Nelson Hotel, Carberry, ca. 1960; Carberry Plains Archives, ca. 1960
Contextual View
No Image

Other Name(s)

Nelson Hotel
Royal Alexander Hotel
Carberry Motor Inn
Hôtel Royal Alexander
Hôtel-motel de Carberry

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1909/01/01 to 1909/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/10/21

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Nelson Hotel is a large hospitality complex at one end of Carberry's business district that includes a three-storey brick hotel (1909), a detached one-storey wood-frame motel (ca. mid-1900s) and a surface parking lot. The municipal designation applies to the two buildings and their site.

Heritage Value

The Nelson Hotel is a conspicuous southern anchor in the Historic Downtown Carberry heritage district and a rare juxtaposed example of how Manitoba's hospitality trade evolved in the 1900s in response to a changing marketplace. The complex's unpretentious hotel, set on a strategic corner site across from the Canadian Pacific Railway tracks (and once to the railway's station, which has since been demolished), recalls the time when hostelries were essential assets in small communities, offering modest short-term lodgings and food and bar services to travellers, itinerant workers and others. The motel, also of practical design and construction, and with side-by-side units conveniently placed at grade around surface parking, represents the trade's mid-century answer to a major shift in business and personal travel from trains to motorized vehicles. The Carberry complex is exceptional in that it combines a motel with an established hotel at an in-town rather than a highway location, a strategy that draws on the attributes of both facilities to sustain the business as a contributor to the vitality of the historic town centre.

Source: Town of Carberry By-law No. 5/2006, June 12, 2007

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the Nelson Hotel site include:
- the prominent corner location at northwest Main Street and Fourth Avenue, opposite the Canadian Pacific Railway line, with the hotel set flush to the Main Street sidewalk, the detached motel aligned along the north and west (rear), and a large parking lot in between, accessible to both thoroughfares
- the complex's ongoing visual and physical relationships with nearby early twentieth-century and modern buildings in the Historic Downtown Carberry Heritage District

Key elements that define the hotel's functional exterior and interior aesthetics include:
- the bulky rectangular three-storey form, of brick construction, with a flat roofline, etc.
- the symmetrical composition of the primary (east) and south facades, defined by shallow pilasters, banding elements and the rhythmic upper-level arrangement of segmental-arched windows, etc.
- the front's offset single-door main entrance flanked by large storefront windows in wooden frames
- the practical details, including the front main-floor awnings, the conspicuous signage, etc.
- the modestly appointed interior, including the deep main-floor plan incorporating a large lobby, cafe and beverage room, the upper floors with rooms and washrooms off central halls, etc.

Key elements that define the motel's straightforward exterior character include:
- the L-shaped form and one-storey height under low-pitched gable roofs with deep projecting eaves
- the side-by-side arrangement of units, each with its own doorway, large rectangular front windows, etc.
- the practical materials and finishes, including the wood-frame construction, brick and stucco cladding, plain wood trim, etc.




Recognition Authority

Local Governments (MB)

Recognition Statute

Manitoba Historic Resources Act

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Site

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1950/01/01 to 1950/12/31

Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce

Function - Category and Type



Commerce / Commercial Services
Hotel, Motel or Inn
Commerce / Commercial Services
Eating or Drinking Establishment

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Town of Carberry 316-4th Avenue Box 130 Carberry MB R0K 0H0

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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