The Second Empire style Hotel Rockland was built in 1870. It was located on Main Street, at the foot of Park Street, overlooking Rockland Harbor from the rear. Originally named the Lynde Hotel, it was renamed the St. Nicholas Hotel in 1880, then became the Rockland Hotel around 1917 and the Hotel Rockland soon thereafter. It had 75 rooms, moderate rates, and excellent food. It claimed to have the “Most Beautiful Cocktail Lounge on the Coast of Maine.” A typical small city hotel, it was a popular spot for out-of-town businessmen to stay, local organizations to held meetings, and motoring tourists to spend a night. The hotel burned to the ground on December 12, 1952.
Not far away another Rockland hotel, the luxurious Samoset, welcomed famous and affluent vacationers who arrived by steamboat or the Maine Central Railroad, which owned the hotel from 1911 to 1941. The grand Victorian hotel, which struggled for years during and after the Depression, burned in 1972. Unlike the Hotel Rockland, however, a new building brought new life to the Samoset as a resort.