The Lakeside Inn was built by the El Cajon Land Company in 1887. This was the company that subdivided and laid out Lakeside's town site, dedicating 45 acres of land, which included Lindo Lake as a public park.
Captain Joseph Smith managed the Inn for the land company for a number of years.
In about 1900, the Inn was sold to Father Henry Eummelen and Tom Fisher. Father Eummelen, a Catholic Priest, was also a noted doctor and established the Kneipp Sanitarium in connection with the Inn. His Kneipp Water Cure for rheumatism and paraplegics was similar to the now famous Sister Kenney Cure. The sanitarium consisted of hot baths and water exercise and was located in back of the Inn in a number of wooden buildings.
The eighty rooms in the Inn were spacious -- single or suite -- with large windows which afforded plenty of sunlight and a view of the beautiful surrounding mountains. There were electric bells, gaslights, and telephones. There was a spacious and warmly decorated lobby. A system of gas and sewerage, including the baths, was complete. The architecture was similar to the Hotel del Coronado, so the Inn was frequently referred to as "The Coronado of the Hills."
Cuisine at the Inn was considered outstanding as the 300 acre farm owned by the Inn furnished garden fresh vegetables. Eggs were fresh from the hennery with Jersey milk and butter provided by their dairy and the squabs from the loft.
Livery service was complete with carriages of all descriptions. There were saddle horses, many suited for children, ladies and sportsmen. Rates at the Inn were $10.00 per week or $2.00 per day, with special rate for nurses and children.
John H. Gay bought the Inn in 1904. He fenced the park and claimed it as part of the estate. He laid out a 60-foot wide racetrack that was especially adapted for automobile and horse racing. The track circled the lake.
The beautiful grounds of the Inn were the scene of many parties where celebrities and millionaires met for golf, boating, duck hunting or to attend the races. The ballroom of the Inn was the scene of many social festivities.
W. A. Crow ran the Inn for his uncle, John Gay, in about 1908.
Some of the area old-timers remembered that the land and lake had been dedicated as a park. They proceeded
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