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Albert Block

86 Albert Street, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3B, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1984/05/28

Primary elevations, from the southwest, of the Albert Block ,Winnipeg, 2007; Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, 2007
Primary Elevations
Contextual view, from the northeast, of the Albert Block ,Winnipeg, 2007; Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, 2007
Contextual View
West elevation of the Albert Block ,Winnipeg, 2007; Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, 2007
West Elevation

Other Name(s)

Albert Block
Alexandra Block
Mariaggi Hotel
St. Andrew's Hotel
Hôtel Mariaggi
Hôtel St. Andrew's
Édifice Alexandra

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1901/01/01 to 1901/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/01/31

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Albert Block, built in 1901, is a mixed-use commercial building located in Winnipeg's Exchange District, a national historic site of Canada. The brick building is situated at an important intersection in the district and is surrounded by the kind of larger brick buildings that were more typical of the area - warehouses and manufacturing operations. The City of Winnipeg's designation applies to the building on its footprint.

Heritage Value

The refined and animated red-brick facades of the Albert Block are a striking contrast to the muscular yellow-brick walls of many nearby warehouses, and recall the many commercial operations that existed side-by-side with the more obvious wholesale and financial institutions that have come to define the Exchange District. Hotels were one of the more common operations that dotted the area west of Main Street, providing lodging for business people visiting the city. For several years the building operated as Mariaggi's (1903-08), a luxury hotel and restaurant and then as the St. Andrew's Hotel (until 1915). Over the years the building also provided apartments, retail operations and offices. Designed by Minneapolis-based architect Fremont D. Orff, the structure is rendered with a variety of simple but effective classical motifs and details. Its occupation of much of a wedge-shaped city block makes it a notable element in a streetscape that boasts several other important turn-of-the-twentieth-century buildings that have been protected by the City of Winnipeg.

Source: City of Winnipeg City Council Meeting, May 28, 1984

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the Albert Block site include:
- the building's occupation of the south half of a wedge-shaped city block, giving prominence to its main (south) facade along McDermot Avenue and also to its secondary elevations along Albert and Arthur streets
- the visual connections to adjacent buildings, including the Telegram Building, Bate Building, Stovel Block, etc.

Key external elements that define the building's delicate classical design include:
- the three-storey box-like form punctuated on the three main elevations with deeply recessed light wells above the ground floor and a flat roof
- the red-brick cladding with quoins at all corners contrasted with the light-coloured modillioned cornice and stone-capped parapet, which together also define the complex outline of the building
- the rectangular window openings, symmetrically composed on each facade, featuring double-hung windows and limestone sills
- the complex arrangement on each of the east and west sides (mid-block) containing an arched and two rectangular openings, all with heavily framed doors and transoms and, on the rectangular openings, elaborate cornice elements

Key elements that define the building's surviving hotel and commercial functions include:
- original balcony railings along the McDermot Avenue elevation
- the expanse of ground-floor display windows along the entire extent of the McDermot Avenue elevation and along the south half of the Albert and Arthur facades, defined with heavy wooden frames and a cornice that runs along the front and sides of the main section of the building
- the angled entrance with supporting column at the southeast corner
- remnants inside of Mariaggi's restaurant, particularly cornices in the rear ground-level section
- remnants inside of the hotel's original doors and casings in areas of the third floor and remaining original bathtubs and sinks in select second-floor apartments




Recognition Authority

City of Winnipeg

Recognition Statute

City of Winnipeg Act

Recognition Type

Winnipeg Landmark Heritage Structure

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Hotel, Motel or Inn
Commerce / Commercial Services
Shop or Wholesale Establishment


Commerce / Commercial Services
Eating or Drinking Establishment

Architect / Designer

Fremont D. Orff



Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

15-30 Fort Street Winnipeg MB

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




Related Places

Aerial view

Exchange District National Historic Site of Canada

Exchange District National Historic Site of Canada is located in downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba. The site consists of a densely built, turn-of -the-century warehousing and business…


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