With a history going back 170 years, the Shepheard’s Hotel, now simple Shepheard, was one of the oldest hospitality establishments of modern Egypt. Originally founded in 1841 by Englishman Samuel Shepheard on a plot of land known for its green landscape in Azzbekia, it has become over the years a center for transcontinental commerce, European tourism, and pivotal Egyptian events. In fact, members of foreign royal families came to this hotel to be in the midst of it all.
In both World Wars, the hotel was chosen as the headquarters of Allied operations in Egypt. Moreover, in 1869, Cairo’s celebrations of the Grand Opening of the Suez Canal were held in one of its great halls.
Numerous celebrities from all over the globe stayed at the Shepheard’s whenever they were in Egypt. As a matter of fact, one memorable event was the banquet thrown in honor of French Empress Eugénie.
In 1952, it was burned down in the Cairo Fire, but within five years, it was renovated and opened its doors once more to the public, however, this time it moved from Azzbekia to Garden City’s Nile corniche. The hotel remained in operation until 2014, when it was closed to the public for renovations.
Almost seven years had passed and the Shepheard remains abandoned, a relic of a different time. It seems that this is about to change as an EGP 1.4-billion agreement with Saudi Arabian Al-Sharif Group will see to its restoration. The statement revealed that the hotel is to be restored within 42 months.