Historical Views of the Rockaways
The Hotel Lorraine, which was located at Beach 31 Street and the beachfront, was built in the early 1900s by Mr. Henry Hart. Mr. Hart also built many elevated walks above the sandy beach to other hotels, the Edgemere railroad station, and out to the surf-line. These walks made access to places more pleasurable, as compared to walking in the soft sand and getting your shoes full. Frequent storms and heavy surf often wrecked these walks, and the hotel itself, on the beach end.
In later years, Henry Hart built the first fully iron-railed boardwalk, high above the beach and surf, between his hotel and the giant hotel known as the Edgemere Club Hotel, at Beach 35 Street.
The Lorraine did well in many years of existence at the beach and was torn down in 1941 to make way for a parking lot. It had been closed for some time, and like other hotels in the area, the city had a tax lien on it. The hotel era of Edgemere was over; Robert Moses demolished all the buildings for parking spaces.
In 1910, the Lorraine boasted electric service, electric elevators, long distance telephones, hot and cold running water in the rooms, and private baths in each and every room and suite.