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Sutro Baths

Exterior Interior Blueprints Programmes Newspaper Film Destruction Misc



San Francisco Chronicle - Aug 5 1891


The San Francisco Examiner - Aug 6 1891

The San Francisco Call - Aug 6 1891


San Francisco Chronicle - Nov 12 1891


San Francisco Call - 20 August 1892                                                                                 


The San Francisco Examiner - Sep 18 1892


San Francisco Chronicle - Nov 5 1892


The San Francisco Examiner - Feb 5 1893

The San Francisco Examiner - Apr 7 1893


The San Francisco Call - Apr 13 1893





    The Sutro baths and casino out on the beach, just north of Sutro Heights, are rapidly nearing completion.
    It is only a matter of weeks now—and not so many of them either—before the mammoth establishment will be thrown open to the public.
    If the work be rushed it can all be finished in a little over a month's time, and the present orders are to "rush."
    When it is completed San Francisco will have an institution of which she maybe justly proud. There is no bathing establishment in this country as large, as complete, as convenient or as luxuriously appointed.
    Once there was a huge depression on the north side of the road that runs to Sutro Heights, and In the depression or gully was a sea of sand, and rock, and seaweed and spray, and the gulls went there to roost.
    "That will always remain a wild and barren place," people said. Now they see how mistaken they were. The gully is still there, but in the place of its jagged
 rocks and sand dunes is a huge concrete reservoir or series of reservoirs; and rising high over these long reservoirs is a bewildering mass of green iron and wood frame work.
    Soon many hundreds of tons of glass will be covered over this frame work. Then the Sutro baths and casino will be enclosed, and one of the most desolate and forlorn spots in the world will have been converted into one of the finest structures in the world—if not the finest.
    Inside these green, glass-covered walls there will he an amphitheater capable of seating 5000 people comfortably; there will be a stage appointed with all necessary scenic effects; there will be private bathing lockers to accommodate 400 bathers at a time, clubrooms for bathers which will give room for 1000 persons at a time, booths, promenades, opera chairs, smoking-rooms, theater, dining-rooms, luncheon parlors, elevators to the observatory on top of the structure, conservatories and six mammoth swimming tanks, not to mention tub baths and baths of all kinds,
 toilet-rooms, waiting-rooms and every convenience and luxury that one could dream of or unlimited money provide.
    Here all manner of aquatic entertainments will be provided. Sham naval battles will be held. There will be trapezes without number, springboards galore, and all the athletic appointments that can possibly be employed in aquatic sports.
    The entire surface of salt water under cover will be 300 feet in length by 150 feet wide. This will be divided into six compartments, or separate tanks. The main tank will be shaped like an L, the perpendicular stroke of the letter representing the entire length of 300 feet, and the horizontal stroke stretching the entire width, or 150 feet.
    On the inside of the L there will be five smaller tanks. Two of these will be 28 by 75 feet each in surface measurement, and the fifth tank will measure 50 by 75 feet.
    The main entrance to the baths and casino will be located at the southeast corner of the structure. This will be quite an elaborate piece of work, the
architects, Messrs. Lemme and Colley, having put in their brightest bits of ornamentation on the plans.
    Flanking both sides of the main entrance to the west are two large passenger elevators, running from the observatory and promenade on the roof, seventy-six feet above, to the lowermost tier of dressing-rooms, which are on a level with the reservoirs.
    Four flights of stairways, wide and easy of ascent, lead from the booths and promenades on the top floor to the Mower bathrooms, and on each side of the stairways are terraces, which will soon be ornamented with flowers and shrubbery.
    The dressing-rooms run in a semi-circle about the bathing tanks, and are built in tiers, rising one above the other. Over these dressing-rooms is the amphitheater. At the bottom of this amphitheater, which begins on top of the first tier of dressing-rooms, is a 14-foot promenade, running clear around the amphitheater, and connecting with the four main stairways.
    At the top of the amphitheater, running
clear around, is a platform thirty-six feet in width, which adjoins the esplanade, and leads thereto by many entrances. The esplanade skirts the outside of the entire structure, offering on the western side a magnificent view of the ocean and the rockbound coast below.
    On this platform will be the booths of all kinds, for edible and liquid refreshments, for the sale of sea-shells, photographs and souvenirs for travelers and whatnot. In front of the booths will be another promenade or dancing pavilion, or casino with tables and chairs, where one may sit and see all that is going on in the entire building.
    Nearly three acres will be under cover of this great green structure, and when it is all completed it will form one of the great attractions of this city. Midwinter Fair tourists and visitors will find in it something they have found nowhere else in their travels—an immense and luxuriously appointed bathing and swimming establishment, combined with a theater, cafe and casino.



The San Francisco Call - Nov 23 1893


The San Francisco Call - Dec 8 1893

John Martini (2/3/2020):  The rotunda was supposed to be the main entrance, with a carriageway around the outside oval pool, but it never happened. At some point (not sure when) the entrance changed to the "Greek Temple" look. There’s no photo evidence the Rotunda entrance was ever used as such.


San Francisco Chronicle - Dec 30 1893


The San Francisco Call - Feb 22 1894


The San Francisco Call - Apr 30 1894

San Francisco Chronicle - Apr 30 1894


San Francisco Chronicle - Oct 22 1894


The San Francisco Call - Oct 22 1894


The San Francisco Call - Jan 2 1895


The San Francisco Examiner - Apr 8 1895


San Francisco Chronicle - Oct 2 1895


San Francisco Call - 7 Oct 1895


San Francisco Call - March 7 1896


The San Francisco Examiner - Mar 7 1896


San Francisco Call - 11 May 1896


The San Francisco Call - Dec 14 1896


The San Francisco Examiner - Jul 9 1897


The San Francisco Examiner - Aug 22 1899

The San Francisco Examiner - Mar 21 1903


The San Francisco Examiner - 13 Feb 1926