Hotel Zumbro

Downtown Rochester

Hotel Zumbro

Rochester, Minnesota 55902, United States

Created By: History Center of Olmsted County


When it opened in 1912 and for several years afterward, the Hotel Zumbro, the tallest building in Rochester at the time, was declared by local boosters to be the finest lodging establishment in the state outside of the Twin Cities. The 122 guest rooms were furnished with the highest quality materials, there were four dining rooms and the basement contained special bathing areas for Mayo Clinic patients.

In fact, the Zumbro shortly became the site of Mayo expansion, when 48 guest rooms were designated as patient care rooms and an operating suite was established in the hotel. When the clinic’s new building opened next door in 1914, a bridge – the city’s first skyway – was built to connect the Zumbro to Mayo. When the Zumbro added an eight-story annex in 1917, Mayo rented space for offices and labs.

The Zumbro remained a favorite of Mayo Clinic patients, including celebrities, for decades. Among the guests over the years were Hollywood stars Roy Rogers, Jeanette MacDonald, Marilyn Monroe and Randolph Scott, according to long-time manager Gilbert Dutton, who worked at the Zumbro from 1933 to 1983.

Visitors and downtown workers alike enjoyed the Zumbro’s cafeteria, which became the Scandia Restaurant in 1958.

By the 1980s, the Zumbro, while still popular with guests, was showing its age, and plans were announced by the Kahler Corp. to build a new hotel at the same site on First Avenue and First Street Southwest. The Zumbro was demolished in 1987.

History Center of Olmsted County

This point of interest is part of the tour: Downtown Rochester


Leave a Comment



Download the App

Download the PocketSights Tour Guide mobile app to take this self-guided tour on your GPS-enabled mobile device.

iOS Tour Guide Android Tour Guide



Updates and Corrections

Please send change requests to