Object of the Day

50th Anniversary- Tivoli

The next anniversary we want to celebrate is the 50th anniversary of the Tivoli Hotel!2002.028.001

What memories can you tell us about your time at the Tivoli?

Please share with us in the comments section below!



  • Kathy Egolf

    There were actually two 50th anniversaries being celebrated in 1956–50 years since the Tivoli was built and 50 years since the visit of Theodore Roosevelt to the Canal Zone. As part of the celebration there at the Tivoli a short musical about Theodore Roosevelt’s visit to the Tivoli and the Canal Zone was presented with Victor Herr, the Balboa High School music teacher, and Donald Musselman, the BHS drama teacher, writing the music and play and directing a small group of musicians and actors from the high school–and perhaps from the community at large, too. I was very impressed! Years later, after we found ourselves living in Pinellas County, the Musselmans were trying to locate the score to give to Dr. Herr’s daughter. I don’t think they were ever able to locate it, but they did donate a copy of the script to the Panama Canal Museum, which the University of Florida should have now. It would be so interesting if any of the musicians or actors in that production would write about the experience.

    • Mimi Stratford Collins

      Kathy, thanks for sharing that story! The Herr/Musselman combo was hard to beat; I wish I’d had more talent so I could have soaked up more of what they had to offer as teachers. 🙂 We were fortunate in having many excellent teachers at BHS.

  • Cheryl Russell

    What wonderful memories the Tivoli brings of when I was a little girl and our family went to lunch there every Sunday after church. At times though I was upset because some of my friends got to go to the Diablo Clubhouse for hamburgers and French fries, my mom would not hear of it. I can visualize her, but cannot remember her name…the beautician who my mother went to at the Tivoli. My dad’s retirement party was held at the Tivoli. I recently was able to buy a Tivoli water pitcher at an estate sale – what a treasure !

  • Malcolm Stone

    The Tivoli Hotel was a great place. At one time it served buffet lunches that were excellent and well attended. Canal employees often came there to eat there lunch and many Panamanian business men came on a regular schedule to enjoy the meal. When I resigned from the canal in 1969 we stayed a the Tivoli for a short after we moved out of our homes and waited till the S.S. Cristobal sailing. The aging of the Tivoli was well noted; when dances and parties were held the whole build would shake through out. People often said the building would only keep standing because the termites were holding hands. Many widows of early canal retirees lived in the Tivoli Hotel.

  • Mickey Walker Fitzgerald

    Our 8th grade graduation party and dance was held at the Tivoli. I felt so grown up and special being at the Tivoli. And my piano teacher had our recitle at the Tivoli, and afterwards we had luncheon. So many wonderful occasions were celebrated there.

  • Lori Leung

    I stayed there with my family before we came back to the U.S. beautiful hotel and great food. Flew Braniff airlines to Florida out of Tocumen Airport.

  • Jerry Bliss

    1939-1950 – had Lunch at the Tivoli each Sunday after services at Baptist Church, Balboa Hts.
    Sad to hear that it burned down. Fond memories of riding the elevator and broiled corbino for lunch.

    • Margie McCauley Ochstein

      I think you might be incorrect about the destruction of the Tivoli. I am pretty sure that it did not burn down. Maybe someone here can verify that. I have a memory that some items such as silver ware and dishes, etc., were sold to the public prior to its destruction.

  • Marilyn Blakely

    Stayed there for about a week in October 1953 as an interim till my army-private husband found more permanent quarters for us. Loved it. Loved the veranda with its hanging fern baskets. Carried that idea back to the States to use at my first house. What a grand old place.

  • Mark House

    I lived at the Tivoli from 1967 to 1969. My dad was a civilian contractor working on the widening of the canal. Wonderful memories of the hotel and all the employees. Front desk clerk Searles was one of my favorites, along with Enrique Iglesias. Too many memories to tell. Loved my life there.

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