Steve Bartlett’s feature in The Telegram June 17 relating to Prof. Charles Danielle and his Octagon Castle was most interesting. It brought to mind a little known association that the Octagon Castle had with Danielle’s Oriental Palace, another bizarre building which he built on the north bank of Quidi Vidi in 1893. Although he named it the Royal Pavilion, in newspaper advertisement he described it as the “Magnificent Oriental Palace.” Its interior was decorated in oriental style. And magnificent it was!
Its ballroom accommodated 1,500 people, the kitchen had four large ranges and as his advertising said. “The attendants will be attired in oriental costumes and in harmony with the general surroundings — that none but Danielle’s has ever yet gladdened the eyes of Newfoundland with.”
This Oriental Palace had much more in common with the Octagon Castle than just having been built and operated by the professor. In fact, and in the unique unconventional style of Danielle, the buildings were one and the same. This transformation came about just two years after the palace opened through action taken by Danielle in his angry response to a dispute with Joe Ross whom he had leased the land from.
A fuming Danielle disassembled the Palace board by board and had it carted by train from the railway station at Fort William off Cavendish Square to Rocky Pond, now called Octagon Pond.
There, he reassembled the palace in octagon style and named it Octagon Castle. Octagon Castle was destroyed by fire in 1915.