While in Denver for the annual CEDIA Expo, we stayed downtown this year at a very interesting hotel, The Curtis. The Curtis, named after the street it's on (see map), is a retro themed boutique hotel. The hotel is part of the Sterling brand of hotels which offer affordable upscale rooms worldwide. And the Sterling hotels are under the umbrella of the Preferred Hotel group, offering some of the finest independent hotels in the world.
The Curtis offers 13 themed floors where the hallways and rooms are decorated around a pop cultural icon. For example, there's the Sci-Fi floor that had posters and items from science fiction movies and television shows. The 13th floor is the "Dun dun DUNNN!" floor which is the horror floor (13th floor - get it?). And another one is Floor of Champions, which is sports themed and features sports icons from the 60's and 70's.
I was on the 14th floor - TV Mania - which featured pictures and posters from television shows from the 60's and 70's. There were covers of TV Guide magazines from the 60's and 70's in the hallway to the room. And in my room there was a picture of Johnny Carson on the desk.
Being on the 14th floor, I had a great view of the front range of the Rocky Mountains, as well as a good view of Invesco Field, the home of the Denver Broncos. The room was very comfortable and it featured a 37" LCD flat panel television. The bathroom was very European with a glass enclosed shower with wooden shelving under the sink. The clock radio was a miniature model of a Volkswagen Beetle convertible. I still couldn't figure out how to work the damn thing. I guess that's what happens when you cross German technology with Chinese technology.
The lobby of The Curtis looked a lot like the set of a game show from the 60's. It had a number of art deco chairs and a flat screen television adorned the wall. The also featured a small library full of books from the 60's and 70's and books that celebrated the pop culture of that period. It was actually kind of fun to look through the books to see what they had while we'd be waiting for our group to congregate.
Parking at The Curtis is in an adjoining garage. There was nothing cheap about parking there - self-park was 18 bucks a day while valet parking was 24 bucks a day. I went with the self-parking to save a few bucks and I have to say more than once I had a hassle getting out of the garage because I either didn't have a ticket to exit (the front desk didn't give me one), or I had the wrong ticket. Paying the extra 6 bucks a day was almost worth it to have the valet park the car.
The Curtis featured a very good restaurant - The Corner Office Restaurant and Martini Bar. The waiters and waitresses were young, hip and hard workers. You could get virtually anything off the menu at any time. One of the things they had were blueberry cheesecake waffles. I waited until the last day to try those as I'm usually not a big breakfast person. It was two mid-sized waffles with cream cheese sandwiched in between and topped with fresh blueberries. God, was it wonderful! But - oh! - so rich! I couldn't eat half of what I had on my plate.
The Corner Office bar was a neat place, as well. We always take liquor and beer into one of our colleagues rooms for everyone to congregate in after a day at the show, just to relax and relate stories of our day on the show floor. But for a change of scenery, we hit the bar in the hotel, too. A lot of people connected with CEDIA were staying at the hotel, so I spent some time in the bar catching up with some old friends.
But the best thing about The Curtis is that it was a two block walk from the Colorado Convention Center (right). That was so much better than the hassle of driving in from the Loews hotel we stayed in near Cherry Creek. The Curtis was much nicer than the Loews, as well. And I'll also say, the breakfast service was much faster than Loews. We always had to figure on an hour for breakfast at Loews. It was much quicker at The Corner Office - when we could get in.
And the good thing about The Curtis was the price. Usually during trade shows, the hotels jack the price up on their rooms. My room, with a queen size bed and all the amenities, was only $142 a night. Regular price on the room is $156 a night. Given it was right downtown, I thought the price was more than reasonable.
Cindy has said that she'd like to go out to Denver sometime and also to go up into the mountains. When we do go, I'd like to stay at the Curtis again. There's good restaurants in the area, it's a two block walk to the 16th St. Mall tourist area, and it's a healthy walk, cab ride or car drive to the LoDo section of town. The Denver Center for Performing Arts is right across the street. It's very centrally located.
The service at The Curtis was great (including the 60's retro candy they'd put on your pillow during their nightly turn-down service), it was in a convenient location, and it was sort of fun and funky at the same time. Oh, yeah. I'd stay there again.