Hugh O’Neill was a wealthy New York merchant. He had visited the Fort Myers area multiple times in the late 1890’s. He was impressed with the potential of this area. In 1897, he bought a Hotel known as the Hendry House located at Fowler and First Street in Fort Myers. He razed the building. He used the area as a site for to build a grand wood frame hotel with 50 rooms originally known as the Fort Myers Hotel. The construction costs were estimated to be $70,000. The hotel was the first building to be electrified. The hotel opened in 1898. It was an exotically landscaped resort hotel. The name was later changed to the Royal Palm.
Over the years, the hotel declined in business. In 1907, Tootie McGregor bought the Royal Palm Hotel and expanded and remodeled it. Despite this, the fortunes or the hotel continued to decline. During the last few years of it’s existence, the hotel became a favorite spot for members of the military stationed in the area during World War 2. The hotel, dock, swimming pool and the casino were demolished in 1948.
Featured was a promenade dock for yachts, swimming pool and a casino.
In 1907, Tootie McGregor bought the financially strapped Royal Palm Hotel. She renovated it and enlarged the building. As years went by, the hotel met on hard times. The pool, promendade dock, and the hotel buildings were demolished in 1948.