Do you remember the Colonial? I only have a vague recollection of it.
The earliest listing in the city directories that I could find for it was in the 1912 edition as the Colonial Apartments. It began being listed as the Colonial Hotel in the 1919-1920 edition.
Above is a pretty good photo of what it looked like (Click on it for a larger image.) The photo and caption above are from an article in the Monday, April 13, 1925 edition of the Lorain Times-Herald. The article was about the reopening of the hotel after it was wrecked by the June 28, 1924 Lorain Tornado.
Much of the article on microfilm was illegible due to poor reproduction quality, but it noted, "Practically all the remains of the old hotel are the outer walls. A new lobby, new rooms, new equipment have been installed.
"The front wall has been extended to the sidewalk, providing a lobby containing 1,700 square feet of floor space. Asbestone, a fire-proof material, has been used for the floor.
"One of the fire-proof features of the Colonial are the solid brick walls encasing the front and rear stairways. Every room in the building is located within 50 feet of one of the stairs."
It sounds like everything was done to keep it from being damaged in a fire, which turned out to be somewhat ironic in view of the last days of the hotel, some fifty-three years later.
Tomorrow: the end of the Colonial Hotel