The Crescent Hotel, while not the most luxurious option in the city, is a remarkable establishment rich in character and history. Constructed in 1931 and officially opened in 1932, the hotel boasts a spacious, colonial-style architecture featuring deep verandahs and high ceilings. These design elements were particularly well-suited to the hot, humid climate of Aden, providing a cool and airy environment for guests.

By the early 1960s, the Crescent Hotel underwent significant refurbishments to modernize its facilities. Fans and air-conditioning were installed throughout the premises. The bar lounge and resident's lounge were fully air-conditioned, ensuring comfort for guests seeking respite from the heat. The dining room, with its extended terrace, was equipped with fans, creating a pleasant dining atmosphere. Each of the 70 bedrooms was outfitted with an air-conditioner and offered a private bath or shower, enhancing the overall guest experience.

In 1950, a 27-room Annexe was added to the rear of the hotel. This addition was notable for its inclusion of phone extensions in every room, a modern convenience at the time. Three rooms in the main hotel were also equipped with phone extensions. The Annexe was constructed for and by the A. Besse Company, with Gino Almondo overseeing the project as the supervisor. During this period, both the Crescent Hotel and the Annexe were properties of the Besse Company, and Mr. Girolamo Volpi served as the hotel manager throughout the 1950s.

Following a stroke in 1948, Antonin Besse, aware of his declining health, undertook the meticulous task of documenting his vast business empire for his successors. Regarding the Crescent Hotel, he remarked, "Until everything is in working order and runs smoothly this project will be a white elephant, but it has never been my habit to abandon a scheme once undertaken and I have no intention of doing so in this case until everything is perfect and runs to my satisfaction. The materials accumulated seem to be sufficient for opening up the hotel, serving meals, looking after the bar which should become popular if well organised."

The Crescent Hotel also featured a small boutique selling luxury goods, adding a touch of elegance and convenience for guests. The Annexe included a hairdressing salon and an Aden Airways booking office, located just off the lobby, further enhancing the services available to visitors.

A charming and quirky aspect of the hotel in the 1950s was the presence of a young gazelle, a familiar sight around the premises. This friendly creature was known for its unusual habit of eating cigarettes offered by tourists, adding to the unique and memorable character of the Crescent Hotel.