The Divine Lorraine Hotel holds special significance in Philadelphia’s history. It was built around 1892 at a time when Philadelphia was experiencing change at the face of the industrial revolution. The building originally housed some of Philadelphia’s wealthiest residents, but later became a hotel in 1900…and was finally bought by Father Divine as a racially integrated organization to support the International Peace Mission Movement. If they were willing to follow the rules of the movement, men and women of all races and religions could stay at the hotel as residents and guests.
The building was sold by the International Peace Mission in 2000 and remained closed and abandoned until 2006 when it was bought by a developer who plans to convert the building into condominiums. At this time last year, I had the opportunity to explore many of the floors in this amazing hotel that still held relics of its lively years before being gutted for changes.