The Curtis Hotel - a review

This hotel is, in a word, FUN right from the moment the double doors open.  Inside the air lock (what I always call that space between two sets of doors because I have seen too many space / deep sea movies with air locks) there is a welcome sign for the pets of guests including Polaroids of past pet guests and their names.  In front of this sign on the floor there are two silver bowls.  One contains fresh, clean water while the other is filled with delicious looking (if I were a dog, I am sure they would look delectable) treats.  I did not bring my dog but was still impressed by the welcoming given to any canines coming for a stay here.  Denver, in general, seems to be a HUGE dog loving city - even more than Austin, Texas.

The lobby seems to have been taken over by an explosion of colors, lights, and nostalgia.  The reception desk is within steps of the front door and houses the most friendly staff I have ever met.  In fact, on night two when asking for our cookie (it is, after all, a Doubletree hotel) she accidentally (?) gave us an extra cookie.  When my husband, the twerp, mentioned it out loud she immediately said, "I didn't hear anything at all" while her counterpart at the desk began shaking her head with a blank stare as if to say, "me either" even while she was helping another guest.  No, it was not a big deal but it was really cute how they both played along instead of boringly just telling us to keep it, or worse, taking it back.  Just to the side of the front doors is a long table which looks like a dining table in someone's home.  Next to that is a floor to ceiling, wall to wall bookcase.  The top shelf is filled with board games, old-school type of course, such as Candy Land and Boggle.  While the rest of the shelves contain books of all varieties.  They are neatly arranged so that their covers are facing out rather than their spines.

Another very amusing aspect of this hotel is that each floor has a different theme.  Now, I use the term "theme" loosely as all this means is that there are different pictures on the wall highlighting the theme and the elevator, instead of chiming at your floor, says something associated with your floor's theme.  Floor 13 - yes, amazingly, this hotel has an actual 13th floor and they take advantage of that by aptly naming it "Dun Dun Dunnnnnnnnn!" because this is the horror floor.  Upon arrival, the elevator says, "Heeeere's Johnny" followed by a slightly menacing giggle.  The 4th floor, "Perfect Pair" is all about famous duos.  The walls are adorned with art depicting some of your favorites; Batman & Robin, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, peanut butter & jelly, and Bert & Ernie.  Each floor has a large mirror that can be seen when exiting the elevators that has a different saying on it for each floor as well, The Dance Floor's mirror, for example, says "Nobody puts Baby in a corner".   That's it.  As far as I can tell, the floors are all the same other than these few things.  This disappointed me as I was looking forward to visiting each floor and noting the fun distinctions.

Downstairs, there is a restaurant and martini bar named The Corner Office.  The atmosphere in the restaurant is a bit more fancy and upscale feeling than the rest of the hotel. The door from the outside street corner is actually more inviting than the door from the hotel so my assumption is they are hoping for more outside business than hotel business, which explains the difference in ambiance.  Entering the restaurant from the hotel feels like you are being led in through the back and secret entrance.  The food and drinks here have been very good albeit a bit on the pricey side.  There does not seem to be a consistency with pricing though as some items are reasonable while others are outrageous.  The Office Burger (which is one item I ordered) runs at a pretty reasonable USD 11.00, with fries,  while the Southern Fried Chicken & Waffles comes in at USD 16.00 and takes 20 minutes.  I will be trying the Baked Lobster Mac & Cheese before I leave though, and this runs at a whipping USD 21.00 but looks amazing.

There are a few items I have found I do not like here.  The main item I dislike is the bed.  The hotel carries the Sweet Sleeper beds by Doubletree but, for me, they are not sweet.  Many people apparently like them as they are more on the firm side of things but I like a softer mattress and actually prefer the Sheraton mattresses.  I wake up in quite a lot of pain, to be honest, and really miss my bed at home.

There is not a lot of light in the room when the curtains are closed or night has fallen.  There is a light switch on the wall that controls one solitary light fixture by the door, one lamp on the nightstand which one turns on with a switch on the lamp itself, one floor lamp in the corner with a foot operated button, and one lamp on the desk which is also a manual switch.

Here is the breakdown of this hotel stay over the past few days:

Things I like:

  • Overall atmosphere
  • Doubletree cookies
  • The look of the shower is simple.  It is a large stall shower with two tile walls, one glass wall, and the shower curtain on the remaining side.  There is a light in the shower, which i personally love.  Plus the glass wall lets in even more light.     
  • Furniture in the rooms is wood and pretty.  The decor of the room is very simple and not overpowering or busy.  
  • Large window in the room to let in a lot of light and shows off the mountains in the distance
  • Staff is extremely friendly and helpful but not intrusive.
  • Restaurant food is, so far, very good as are the drinks.  
  • Location - right in downtown a few blocks from everything.  The convention center is about two blocks away, 16th street, where the free shuttle is caught, is two blocks away, there is a bus stop for the RTD one block away. There is a 7-Eleven right around the corner for any items forgotten or drinks & snacks (just remember - no refrigerator or microwave in the room!).
  • Free Wi-Fi - just get a password from the front desk which lasts for a few days before a new one is needed.  They have a "high speed" upgrade for USD 8.95 per 24 hour period but there is no problem at all with the free connection.  I don't see that anyone would really need the upgrade.  

Things I did not like:
  • Beds (Sweet Sleeper beds)
  • Placement of toilet paper roll was too close - it feels cramped when sitting on the toilet because the roll of paper pressed against the leg of the user
  • Lack of safe in room (although, they offer safe deposit boxes at reception for free)
  • Lack of refrigerator in room
  • Small amount of storage space - there is one armoire that has limited hanging space plus a few very small shelves, one "dresser" with only three usable drawers as the other side is a cabinet.  The desk does not have any drawers but there are two drawers in the nightstand.  
  • Cost of food in the restaurant is a bit high depending on what is ordered but the room service rates are outrageous.  Just for room service, they charge a 20% fee plus a USD 2.00 delivery charge.  So your USD 14.00 Crabcake Benedict and USD 3.00 juice will end up costing you USD 20.40. 
  • Lack of hooks in the bathroom.  There are three hooks EXACTLY.  None of these are actually in the shower which means there is nowhere to hang your scrubby thingie or your washcloth, whichever you use.  There are two hooks on the back of the door, not even close to the shower, and one over the oddly placed toilet paper holder where the hair dryer is hung in a canvas bag that says "hairdryer".  If you hang a body towel on this hook it will hit the paper roll or lightly brush the person sitting on the throne.   I assume this hook is possibly for the bath mat as that is smaller.  However, if there are more than two people in the room, hooks will need to be shared if you plan on using towels repeatedly.  I suppose, you could just throw them on the floor each day and get new ones although that seems to not be what the hotel would like since they appear to suggest you reuse your towels and be earth conscious and all.  You would think they would provide more hooks in order to conserve water.
  • There is no pool! I was most disappointed in this fact but, as I did not choose the hotel, I could not complain much.  The worst part is having to look out of my window and the TWO pools just below me for two other places (one being a residential tower).  

Items I am indifferent to but may be important to others and comments I have heard from others in my group:

  • The hair dryer is a Conair 1875.  It does not seem to be all  that powerful but it did dry my hair enough (to be fair, I don't blow dry all my hair each day as it mostly air dries so this was of not much concern to me).  It seems to be more powerful than other hotel units but not as powerful as what even I have at home.  
  • The shower head does not move.  It looks as though it maybe is supposed to but mine did not.  
  • There is no bathtub in any of the rooms as far as I can tell.  This was a concern of people I spoke to in our group but was not a matter to me.  
  • The coffee maker in the room is a Wolfgang Puck 2-cup maker with the pods.  It made coffee just fine once I got it to work.  Apparently, the buttons need to be pushed just right or else it beeps at you in a very mockingly manner.  To me it sounded like Nelson from The Simpsons saying "HA HA".   I did get milk for my coffee but had to keep it in the ice bucket due to the lack of a refrigerator. The coffee package does include two individual servings of International Delight half & half creamers.  However, I use about 2x that per cup of coffee.  
  • The water bottles in the room cost USD 3.00 each to open.  No thank you. 
  • The cab ride from the airport is approximately USD 60.00 one-way.  Not much can be done about that - it is not the hotel's fault!
  • There is a breakfast buffet but it is USD 19.00 and very basic.
  • The glass wall in the shower would not allow any privacy if someone were to need the toilet while another was in the shower.  Although, glass wall faces the door and not the toilet so it may not be as detrimental to everyone's insecurities.  
  • The bathroom toiletry amenities are Crabtree & Evelyn's Citron collection of shampoo, soap, and conditioner.  I am not impartial to any variety of these and do not use any shampoo but others seem to be very excited about this choice.  I used the soap and conditioner and was pleased.  
  • There is no HBO or any other premium channels on the television.
  • There are no microwaves in the rooms.
  • There seems to be a very nice fitness center on the second floor although I am no expert at these.
General Information                                                                                                       

1405 Curtis Street, Denver, Colorado 80202

303.571.0300 / 800.525.6651


Rates for July 4th 2013 / one night:
USD 125.00 per night for a standard rate
USD 132.00 for Senior or AARP or AAA rates
USD 140.00 for military / government rate
** Standard rate is lower than all other "discounted" rates.  I am not able to check corporate rates.


  1. Replies
    1. Nope - I am absolutely not a tour guide. I would be TERRIBLE at that job!