The original Idanha Hotel (photo) was built by Union Pacific Railroad in 1887, and it was located in Soda Springs. The name came from Idanha Mineral Water, which was bottled locally and sold all over the United States. The Idanha was a luxury hotel, with electric lights and natural gas heating. The Tri-Weekly Statesman quoted a gentleman who had seen the new hotel as saying “the structure was not only one of the most complete in the West, but for its size one of the finest in the world.” It had $18,000 worth of furniture. During the grand opening, railroad fares to Soda Springs were half price.
Advertisements for the Idanha in Soda Springs claimed that it could comfortably accommodate “several hundred guests.” If that seems a little hyperbolic, it’s nothing compared with the way the nearby medicinal springs were described for their “many remarkable cures.”
In May of 1895 the Idanha Bottling works burned. One may well speculate about how a water company burns, but it did. They were back up and running two years later, producing at one point a million bottles a year.
The hotel, however, did not come back from its own fire in 1921.
So, there were once two Idanha Hotels. There was once an Idanha Candy Company (not to be confused with the venerable Idaho Candy Company). And, there is an Idanha, Oregon, a couple of hours southeast of Portland. Like the first Idanha hotel, it was named after the famous mineral water.