It was Yousuf Karsh, who had his photograhy studio in the Chateau Laurier Hotel, who took the most famous photo of Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill by Karsh

Winston Churchill by Yosef Karsh

Ottawa, Ontario – Yousuf Karsh, known as a master photographer of celebrities, world leaders and artists, had his studio in the Chateau Laurier hotel and lived there for 16 years. It’s said he took the famous photo of Churchill on December 30, 1941, just as Churchill was exiting the House of Commons after giving a speech. Churchill was not happy about having to stop to pose, and he gruffly granted Karsh only two minutes of his time. After posing him, Karsh walked up and plucked Churchill’s cigar from his mouth, and then captured the resulting scowl on Churchill’s face. Karsh’s former residence at the hotel is now known as ‘the Karsh Suite.’ His many portraits of famous people include Ernest Hemingway, Nelson Mandela, Pablo Picasso, Carl Jung, Humphrey Bogart, Grace Kelly and Albert Einstein.

Quick Tip: The famous Fairmont Chateau Laurier Hotel was built by Charles Melville Hays, who lost his life in the sinking of the Titanic. The Fairmont Chateau Laurier is now on Twitter at @Fairmontlaurier.

Time your visit to Ottawa for early May and you’ll see the city burst into bloom: more than three million tulips are planted throughout the Capital Region.


Fairmont Chateau Laurier, 1 Rideau St Ottawa, Ontario


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