The repolished crown jewel of downtown is almost ready for her
close-up as workers finish up at the Hotel Lafayette. Over two hundred
people are working throughout the building almost every day of the week to get the
historic landmark ready its official debut in just a few weeks.
Chandeliers have been refurbished and returned to the
Crystal Dining Room, the ornate plaster ceiling of the grand ballroom has been
repaired, and the scagliola has been replicated along Peacock
Alley. The transformation is nothing short of amazing especially considering
the timeline for the restoration work.
Although there is still work that needs to be completed
throughout the building, much of first floor public spaces and ballrooms as
well as the upper floor apartments have been completed. It’s mostly just a
matter of tidying things up and adding the finishing touches to those spaces. Much
of the space in the basement for storage, services, and the rooms for
Butterwood Desserts is in various stages of drywall going up and being
finished. The Butterwood space is going to be pretty incredible with the high,
ornate ceilings and will surely be one of the more unique spaces downtown.
The proposed exterior patios will not be happening in the
foreseeable future because an agreement could not be reached with the adjacent
property owner. However, the new in-fill structure has been completely framed
up and getting ready for the interior as work progresses. It will serve as
rental space for the Lafayette Tap Room below which will be operate by the
Pearl Street Bar and Grill.
As a result of the exterior patio idea being axed, an interior patio has been added. The floor of a light alley in the center of the building will serve as a party space for those wishing to rent it out via the Lafayette Tap Room. Those parties who wish to be on the patio late into the night have to rent the surrounding four rooms at that level to ensure that hotel guests will not be disturbed during their stay.
The building will even be hosting some great events in the
coming weeks including the Beaux-Arts Ball by the School of Architecture and
Planning from UB on April 28th and the 150th anniversary
celebration of the Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society on May 10th.
Carmina Wood Morris is project architect.
^ Main lobby of the Hotel Lafayette
^ Restaurant space in the basement
^ Ballroom at the end of Peacock Alley