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Hotel Del Rey Preservation Project

An historic hotel saved and disassembled by hand awaiting funding and support to fully rebuild and restore for the community

Hotel History

Ida Belle Frazier arrived in Corona at the young age of 19, riding a lumber wagon with her husband and two-year-old son. They found themselves in a town under construction, with Main St., Sixth St., and the Grand Circle being graded and not a single house in sight. Drinking water was scarce, and bathing had to be done with water hauled from the Santa Ana River. Nights were spent sleeping under boards leaned against their wagon while they built their humble 12 by 14 feet home on Sheridan between Ninth and Tenth Streets.

Yet, Ida's indomitable spirit shone through. She persevered through hardships, including the loss of her husband to acute appendicitis, leaving her widowed and penniless. The kindness of Corona's community, exemplified by Mrs. W. H. Jameson, who offered comfort and a generous gift of a $20 gold piece, and a merchant who cleared her debt, provided a glimmer of hope in the midst of her struggles.


Ida's story took a turn when she wed William Henry Frazier, and their son Ray became the first child born in the incorporated City of Corona. Motivated by her dedication to the community, the city fathers approached Ida with a remarkable proposition—to construct and operate a new hotel. With the city's financial support, Ida became the proud owner of a lot on Sixth and Victoria, where she built the Hotel Del Rey, named after her son Ray. It was in this very hotel that Corona's first telephone was installed, marking a significant milestone in the town's development.

The Hotel Del Rey quickly became the heart of Corona's social scene, hosting numerous community events, receptions, fundraisers, and grand affairs. Its banquet hall was unparalleled, providing a space for the community to gather and celebrate. In 1913, the third floor was added by raising the existing two floors. In the 20’s, new owners changed the name from the “Del Rey” (of the kings), to the “President,” then to the “Californian,” the “Centennial,” finally becoming the “Victoria” in the 40’s. Between 1913 and 1998, the Hotel experienced a multitude of phases and ownership transfers.

Saving the Hotel

In 1998, the land was bought by the Bank of America for use to expand their parking. There was no hope of keeping the building in place. Long negotiations ensued, finally persuading the bank and the City of Corona to deed the structure to the preservation society along with financial help to move it, though there was no appropriate place. However, the Corona Heritage Foundation was just forming with the intention of creating a Heritage park. A restoration company was discovered that could harmlessly disassemble the structure. It was decided that the entire hotel would be stored until it could be reasembled in the future at the park.Though there are obviously no architectural comparisions between Corona’s Hotel Del Rey and Riverside's Mission Inn or San Diego's Del Coronado, the historical aspects to their cities are as important. The hotel is planned to once again be the prime spot in town to hold a fancy banquet or a stylish wedding reception.


Determined to save this historic gem, a group of dedicated volunteers raised funds and meticulously disassembled the hotel, preserving every piece with great care. The Corona Heritage Park and Museum was established, offering a new home for the Hotel Del Rey, ensuring its preservation for generations to come.


The Board and Hotel Del Rey Committee are working with architects, engineers, and the City of Corona to procure permits and continue the restoration project. The Hotel is in storage awaiting reassembly.

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