Friday, 1 April 2011

Rouleau Hotel: AKA Dog River Hotel

Rouleau hotel in 2007. Image source
Built in 1905 as the Arlington Hotel, the 42-room hotel in Rouleau served as a recruiting office during the First World War, and as an emergency hospital during the Spanish flu epidemic of 1918. Due to Prohibition, implemented in July 1915, it was closed for a couple of years. When A.D. Hierlihy bought the hotel in 1920, it was quite run down. After a great deal of cleaning, painting and redecorating, the Hierlihy family moved into the hotel and it was opened for business once again.  

Arlington Hotel, Rouleau, c. 1915. Image source
Tony and Esther Van Oostdam purchased the hotel in 1932, advertising the “Dining Room known for Best of Food and Elegant Service.”  Rooms were rented by the day, week or month. The hotel boasted a licensed beverage room after 1935, which served as a meeting place for the men of Rouleau. A chimney fire on the second floor the hotel in July of 1948, when it was owned by Stanley Jarosinsky, forced the evacuation of 40 residents. This fire also necessitated more renovations.

In 1994, the Rouleau Hotel was operated by Reid Junek and Joanne Desfosses. From The Buckle of the Grain Belt; Rouleau and District History, 1894-1994

Rouleau, c. 1950.  From The Buckle of the Grain Belt; Rouleau and District History, 1894-1994

In the summer of 2003, filming began in Rouleau for the CTV sitcom, Corner Gas. The town of 450 was renamed Dog River, and the Rouleau Hotel became the Dog River Hotel. The exterior was refurbished for filming, and dressing rooms were installed on the upper floors. Corner Gas wrapped up filming the sixth and final episode in September of 2008. The series finale aired on CTV on April 13, 2009.

The bar at the Dog River Hotel was open for business in April 2007. Image source

© Joan Champ 2011


  1. Wow,This one is very nice and very excellent images of oldest hotel and hotel location.I like this Rouleau and Arlington Hotel.This hotel offered very classic and excellent facilities.

    Pousadas em buzios

  2. Is the hotel still open?
    I went there last week and it looks abandon. Or is it just run down.....

  3. Sorry, I have no idea if the hotel is still open -- most likely run down. Sylvain Senecal recently bought the old Corner Gas set in Rouleau and transformed it into a museum-souvenir shop. Maybe if tourism really takes off, someone will tackle the renovation of the old hotel.

  4. My grandfather was a barber and ran the barber shop/pool hall in Rouleau. I alwas thought that his business was in the Rouleau hotel. This would of been in the early 1920's. HIs name was Gearge Fuller. Do you have any info on this?


    1. My Grandfather owed and operated the Arlington/Rouleau Hotel from 1920 to the 30's when he moved his family to the Melfort area (my father was born in the Hotel in 1921). I don't recall ever hearing mention of a barber shop in the Hotel.
      S. Hierlihy
      Russell, Ont.

    2. where the town hall is now...not there any more...not in the hotel...J. Perkin

  5. Sorry, but I don't have any information on George Fuller.

  6. Any chance that there was two hotels in Rouleau, because George Fuller lived in Rouleau, ran a barber shop and pool hall. He died in 1939 in Rouleau.

  7. I am hoping to visit Rouleau in July. Do you know if there is any accommodation in the town, please?
    Mike Dunton, UK

  8. The hotel is open again and has great Chinese food and a full menu