History of the Marriott Syracuse Downtown, formerly Hotel Syracuse.
Every hotel tells a story.
Nowhere in Syracuse will you find a more historical hotel than the Marriott Syracuse Downtown. During our $74 million renovation and restoration, we have cultivated 261+ rooms and suites along with 3 ballrooms and 3 restaurants. From our Grand Ballroom’s sky mural ceiling to the original hare and bone floors, there is a story behind nearly every feature of our historic property. Today, we will share a bit of that story with you. If you have yet to visit, take a visual journey through the ins and outs of our property and learn the history of the Marriott Syracuse Downtown. It may inspire you to visit sometime in the not-so-distant future.
While entering our lobby you will find our original Terrazzo Flooring, along with our Chandeliers that have been restored to their natural beauty. Arguably, one of the most fascinating pieces of history is the 40-foot by 6-foot mural, located behind the front desk, depicting 20 key events during the first 100 years of Syracuse’s history. This mural was painted for the hotel by Carl Roters, a professor at Syracuse University’s College of Fine Arts. The painter and art restorer, Marek Mularski, of Auburn, Mass., cleaned decades worth of tobacco smoke and coal dust which had darkened the mural over the years, making it identical to how it looked back in 1949.Our lower lobby is home to many of our facilities, such as our IACC center, which was originally a church and then later converted into a Bingo hall. Our Eleven Waters Bar is also located on our lower lobby, too. During our renovation process, we found spouts on the walls! Where Eleven Waters Bar is located now is where the bathrooms used to be.
On the 10th floor is our Grand Ballroom. This famous event space at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown features the original 16-foot-tall Chandeliers, boasting over 2,000 Crystals on each one. The chandeliers have been carefully restored to their former glory. They were sent to Connecticut to be refurbished. At the Connecticut “Chandelier Spa” they used a machine to remove layers of paint that could take ink off a sheet of paper. They came back in two boxes, which had to be placed on a crane and sent up through the windows because they were too big for the elevators! While in our Grand Ballroom, look up and view 27-foot-high ceilings, beautifully crafted with a sky painted ceiling. Then look down to notice the original hare and bone floors!
Next, head to our Persian Terrace. The chandeliers are replicas of the originals as they were either too damaged or “walked off property” throughout the years. Yet, the murals in the middle are called Sirens, each Siren represents a season of the year. They were discovered after pulling down tile during the restoration!
Last but not least all of our guest corridors are finished with local company and beautifully crafted Stickley Audi Furniture. Thanks to our owner Ed Riley, the Marriott Syracuse Downtown boasts a brand new look but the memories remain unchanged.
Until next time,
The Marriott Syracuse Downtown
Our Lobby’s Mural at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown and the Story Behind It.
A picture is worth a thousand words or so the saying goes. Whether a first time visitor or frequent traveler, it’s hard not to stop and stare at the large painting that hangs behind our front desk. Yet, do you know the history behind our lobby’s mural at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown?
Our historic mural, which depicts 20 key events during the first 100 years of Syracuse’s history, was painted by Carl Roters back in 1949. A few of the depicted events include the discovery of salt springs near the shore of Onondaga Lake and the formation of the Iroquois Confederacy. Roters was a professor at Syracuse University’s College of Fine Arts, retiring in the early 60s before passing away in 1989. For this painting, Roters used short strokes which gives a feeling of movement. The artist who restored the mural and was able to see Roter’s work up close, describes it as a masterpiece.
The painter and art restorer, Marek Mularski, of Auburn, Mass., cleaned decades worth of tobacco smoke and coal dust which had darkened the mural over the years, partly due to the hotel’s original furnace which burned coal. The vigorous cleaning process brightened up the mural, making it identical to how it looked back in 1949.
In addition to the mural, Roters also completed four panels of work in our Cavalier Room.
The next time you are a guest of ours at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown or just passing through, be sure to take a moment to stop and admire the magnificent artwork that is displayed in our lobby. It is exciting that these historic works of art continue to have a place at our hotel. You can learn more about the story of our lobby’s mural at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown by clicking here.
The history behind our beautifully restored ballrooms at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown.
In order to know where you’re going, you must know where you’ve been. When our hotel first opened in 1924, the magnificent ballroom resembled a blue sky with scattered white clouds. The idea was to create the impression that the ceiling was open to the sky. As the years went on, the ceiling was covered with acoustic tiles and painted white. During our restoration, the beautiful skyscape scene was recreated in our 10th floor ballroom at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown, restoring the Hotel Syracuse’s famous Grand Ballroom to its 1924 glory.
The sky ceiling restored:
Employees of John Tiedemann Inc., a NJ company that specializes in painting and decorating churches and historic buildings, used historic photos and research to create the ceiling that you admire today. Yes, the old tiles are still there but the workers plastered over them, painting the ceiling blue and then air-brushing the white clouds.
A fresh coat of paint goes a long way:
Along with the ceiling, the walls were also painted white years ago, giving a “washed out” appearance to the room. Peeling back the layers, the specialists discovered that the grand ballroom at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown was originally shades of gold, a refreshing look compared to the crisp white appearance that it has been for decades. To match the gold color scheme, workers also painted the columns faux marble, a nice complement to the glamorous gold walls.
Our Grand Ballroom was one of the last rooms to be renovated, receiving extra attention to ensure a magnificent and “wow” finish. The sky ceiling at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown is certainly a favorite among our guests and wedding parties. “This whole floor is really the showcase of the building,” our new owner, Ed Riley said. “This has the views. They’re amazing, something you don’t normally see in a ballroom.”
Interested in planning a wedding with us? Take a tour of our grand ballroom today. Click here for additional information.
OHA presents tours of our historic Syracuse Hotel for a walk down memory lane.
Oh what a history we have! Originally known as the Hotel Syracuse, our property was considered to be the largest and most prestigious hotel in Syracuse, NY for nearly 90 years. It was built from 1922-1924 by architect George B. Post and Sons and the doors officially opened to the public in August 1924.
Today at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown, we are working hard to preserve the historical significance of the former Hotel Syracuse and we are pleased to couple the historic with the new and offer you a brand new experience.
To pay homage to the days gone by, the Onondaga Historical Association (OHA) conducts twice weekly historic tours and presentations.
With a combination of showing both the renovated architecture and the restored memories, some highlights of the public tour include the hotel lobby, Persian Terrace, Grand Ballroom, Bridal Suite, Groom Suite and Presidential Suite.
This tour of our historic Syracuse hotel is a popular one and tends to sell out quickly so plan accordingly. We look forward to welcoming you!
Get out your green garb – it’s almost time for St. Patrick’s Day in Syracuse and this year, the parade ends here!
Syracuse is always ready for a party! St. Patrick’s Day is one of the biggest events in the area and this year, you can keep the fun going with us at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown.
The Syracuse St. Patrick’s Parade began in 1982 and is now considered to be one of the Top Ten Parades in the United States.
Events leading up to the parade include charitable fundraising for the St. Patrick’s Hunger Project: 2017 Tipperary Hill Shamrock Run takes place March 4 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm. The Shamrock Run is a four-mile run through Syracuse’s Tipperary Hill neighborhood the weekend before the parade.
Friday, March 10th will begin the weekend festivities when parade organizers paint the green stripe indicating the parade route at 9:30 a.m.
Saturday March 11 the Parade will take place at noon from Clinton Square and follows the route south along Salina Street.
Come Celebrate with at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown for St. Patrick’s Day in Syracuse
St. Patrick’s Day Post-Parade Party
The St. Patrick’s celebration will continue after the parade in our Lobby and Finger Lakes Ballroom. Join us for food, drinks, live music and Irish step dancing! This is a family friendly event and admission is $10 admission for adults.
The High Kings Concert
In the evening, The Dublin based High Kings will be performing in our Grand Ballroom. Tickets are $40 for General Admission. There will be food and drink concessions available. Doors open at 7:00PM and the show begins at 8:00PM. To purchase tickets, click here.
Stay Overnight at our historic hotel with our party packages
Friday Night Package (3/10) – starting at $199
Overnight accommodations for the night before the big parade day!
The High Kings Package (3/11) – from $309-$329
Includes: Overnight accommodations for Saturday night, two general admission tickets to attend The High Kings concert in the Grand Ballroom and bonus entry for two into Finger Lakes Ballroom for the post-parade party!
Parade Party Package (3/11) – from $259-$279
Includes: Overnight accommodations for Saturday night, Two wristbands for the afternoon Post-Parade Party in Finger Lakes.
The Hotel Syracuse was a major part of the St. Patrick’s Day event in Syracuse some time ago and it is so exciting that the Marriott Syracuse Downtown now continues the tradition with fun, updated twists! To reserve for any of the parties, events or overnight accommodations, visit our website or call 315-474-2424.
Happy New Year from the Marriott Syracuse Downtown
As the New Year approaches us with hopes anew, here is wishing you and your family a wonderful year ahead!
The New Year is always such a special time to share with family and friends as you say goodbye to the past and usher in the future. We hope your New Year’s Eve plans include our Roaring 20’s Party at our historic Syracuse hotel, but however you plan to celebrate, we wish you every happiness this season and throughout the year.