Defining Luxury: The Curtiss Hotel

By Charlie Fashana

Published on | Last Updated

You’ll hear it from visitors and residents alike these days: “This is in Buffalo?”

Whether it’s a new building, an improved attraction or a restored gem from our booming past, signs of our city’s growth continue to pop up – and flourish – all over our community.

The latest of the rollouts is the newly-restored Curtiss Hotel. The 19th century building at the corner of Franklin and Huron Streets, named after its original real-estate mogul owner, Harlow C. Curtiss, is now an upscale boutique and restaurant – and then some.


A dazzling main lobby. Photo courtesy of Curtiss Hotel.

An oasis-like entrance welcomes you. The wall fountains at the entrance remind you that there’s a cool-down to come while serving as an inspiration for a vacation-like mentality. Walk through the doors, and now you know exactly how the Curtiss operates: every detail is accounted for. You’ll see elements of old-meets-new with each piece of Christopher Guy furniture, a 1920s-inspired tile mosaic, intricate crown moldings, an ornate chandelier overhead, and a smiling face at the desk ready to help tie it all together.

The Curtiss’ Chez Ami, modeled after the original Buffalo restaurant from the 1930s, features a carousel bar, rotating one full turn every 45 minutes. This is a swanky destination for everything to a lunch meeting with a coworker to a happy hour with friends. It perfectly compliments the experience just feet away, where dim lighting and curated bronze silverware set the scene for an exquisite meal made only more perfect by a special occasion. And if you want another option, covered patio seating extends nearly right to the street.


Chez Ami – Photo courtesy of Curtiss Hotel

There truly is a place, and a setting, for everyone.

Through purposely-fast elevators, you’ll arrive at the floor of your hotel room – key-card permitting for privacy. In front of your door, you’ll see their take on technology with a screen that acts as part-doorbell, part-oracle to communicate with the staff about your every want and need.


A luxurious night of rest. Photo courtesy of Curtiss Hotel.

Walking into your king-bed room, you’ll see the curtains open with you; one small feat for technology, but one giant leap for feeling like you’re somewhere special. From a multi-stream shower to French-pressed Italian linen, this is the type of room that you won’t soon want to leave. It’s luxury that’s worth every penny. And if you need even more relaxation, head back down and spend some time in the urban hot springs for some indoor/outdoor water enjoyment through all four seasons.

Head to the very top of the hotel where you can catch the “VUE” from the rooftop. This white, pristine bar and patio is what social media photos are made of. With a clear view to every angle of the city’s skyline, you can sit in the sun, by the fire, or inside. It’s not Buffalo’s first rooftop bar, but it may be our best.

The view from Vue.

The Curtiss is where you stay for a drink, for a night or for a while. No matter how many steps you take inside, you are sure to find something that takes you out of Franklin Street and into the getaway that you may not have been looking for, but you definitely needed. The defining qualities are in the details – I highly recommend that you take that drink, night, or while to see for yourself.

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Charlie Fashana

At work I'm part artist, part scientist. At home I'm part husband, part dad. Here and always, I'm all Buffalo.