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Fun facts from The Broadmoor's first 100 years - part 1

In the 100 days prior to The Broadmoor's 100th anniversary celebration, The Gazette is collecting 100 fun facts about the rich and colorful history of that landmark Colorado Springs institution. Here are the first 10.

1. The building of The Broadmoor
1. The building of The Broadmoor 
The Broadmoor hotel was built in 13 months. While that might sound quick, it was two months over schedule. Construction costs exceeded $2 million; furniture and interior decorating added another $1 million.
SOURCE: “The Broadmoor Story”
This photo is  a view of the Broadmoor hotel under construction in September 1917.  Margaretta M. Boas Photograph Collection. Courtesy of PIkes Peak Library District,  001-5170.

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2. Partying like a Rockefeller
2. Partying like a Rockefeller
Industrialist and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller was among about 400 guests at a special VIP opening of The Broadmoor on June 1, 1918. Paint fumes, however, caused him to flee to the rival Antlers Hotel downtown to sleep. (On the same weekend 100 years later, June 1-3, The Broadmoor is offering a Centennial Gala Weekend Package at $1,918, double occupancy, that includes an elaborate Prohibition Party, history tours and lectures, and a dinner with Colorado favorites.)
Associated Press photo.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

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3. How about a massage for a buck?
3. How about a massage for a buck?
The “thermo hydrotherapeutic department,” an early version of what is now The Spa at The Broadmoor, was one of the hotel’s highlights in 1918. Services included a Turkish bath steam room with shampoo and shower ($1.50), a half-hour massage ($1) and an oil or alcohol rub and salt glow (50 cents).
Source: “The Broadmoor Story”
Photo courtesy of The Broadmoor.

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4. Penrose's menagerie: From resort to zoo
4. Penrose's menagerie: From resort to zoo
Broadmoor founder Spencer Penrose kept an ever-growing menagerie at the hotel in the early days. But the animals didn’t amuse everyone. The smell and noise spurred complaints, and a court ordered The Broadmoor to pay $10,000 in damages to a boy who was bitten by a monkey. So Penrose moved most of his animals to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, which he had built on the side of the mountain. (Penrose deeded the zoo to the people of Colorado Springs in 1938, a year before his death.)
In this photo, Spencer Penrose holds a camel with a monkey on its back in this photo. Milton Strong Collection, courtesy of Pikes Peak Library District,  042-372.
Sources: “The Broadmoor Story,” “Broadmoor Memories”

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5. The Broadmoor's first golf pro
5. The Broadmoor's first golf pro
Golf was a major draw for The Broadmoor from the start. James Martin “Long Jim” Barnes,The Broadmoor’s first professional golfer, was paid $15,000 a year, making him the world’s highest-paid golf pro at the time. Barnes won the PGA Championship in 1916 and 1919 and the U.S. Open Championship in 1921 and 1925.
Source: “The Broadmoor Story”
Photo courtesy of The Broadmoor

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6. A gathering of riches
6. A gathering of riches
The Hundred Million Dollar Hotel Group (an indication of their approximate net worth at the time) arrived at The Broadmoor on Sept. 4, 1920. Broadmoor founder Spencer Penrose had invited the prominent hotel associates for an all-expenses-paid, two-week celebration. The dozens of men enjoyed dinner dances, drove their cars up Pikes Peak, played polo and golf and raced biplanes to Denver and back. The next year, members of the group honored Penrose with a banquet at the Commodore Hotel in New York.
SOURCE: “The Broadmoor Story”
Photo courtesy of The Broadmoor.

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7. Skater had day job while training at Broadmoor
7. Skater had day job while training at Broadmoor
In 1950, Olympic skating gold medalist Dick Button stayed at The Broadmoor for the summer to train. While training, he also worked on the Cheyenne Mountain road maintenance crew to earn room and board.
SOURCE: Broadmoor archives
Associated Press photo.

AP

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8. Broadmoor served as Willkie’s campaign HQ
8. Broadmoor served as Willkie’s campaign HQ
Wendell Willkie, Republican presidential candidate, used The Broadmoor as his campaign headquarters for five weeks in 1940. (Wilkie lost his bid to keep President Franklin Roosevelt from a third term. He also failed in his bid four years later to again become the Republican presidential nominee.)
SOURCE: Broadmoor archives
This photo shows Wendell Willkie and his wife, Edith, sitting on log bench with Charles Tutt and Paul Borchet, the manager of The Broadmoor hotel, in August 1940. Margaretta M. Boas Photograph Collection, courtesy of the Pikes Peak Library District,  001-3550

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9. Boxing great trained at Broadmoor
9. Boxing great trained at Broadmoor
Broadmoor founder Spencer Penrose was a big boxing fan. Jack Dempsey came to The Broadmoor in 1926 to train for a bout with Gene Tunney, but a rigorous schedule of publicity events for the hotel kept him so busy that he left to train elsewhere. He often returned as a guest with then-wife Estelle Taylor, a Hollywood actress.
SOURCE: “Broadmoor Memories”  by Elena Bertozzi-Villa
In this photo, Broadmoor founder Spencer Penrose, boxer Jack Dempsey and two unidentified men and a woman stand in front of an airplane. Margaretta M. Boas Photograph Collection, courtesy of Pikes Peak Library District, 001-4900.

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10. Broadmoor pool was largest in West
10. Broadmoor pool was largest in West
The Broadmoor had the largest indoor pool in the West when it opened in 1918. The 35-by-80-foot pool used mountain spring water purified by the most modern filters and a powerful violet-ray machine to “destroy all bacteria of any kind.” Private dressing rooms were provided, and a professional swimming teacher was always on duty. The pool closed in 1961.
SOURCE: Broadmoor archives
This is a view of The Broadmoor's pool in 1918. Mayall Photograph Collection, courtesy of Pikes Peak Library District, 102-5432.

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