The Statler Hotel company was one of the United States' early chains of hotels catering to traveling businessmen and tourists. It was founded by Ellsworth Milton (E. M.) Statler.
In 1901, Buffalo was the host city for the Pan-American Exposition. Statler envisioned and built a hotel on the Exposition grounds and called it "Statler's Hotel." It was a temporary wooden structure intended to last the duration of the Exposition. With 2084 rooms, it could accommodate 5000 guests. Although the Exposition was deemed an overall failure due to a number of factors (including bad weather and the assassination of President William McKinley), Statler made a small profit—one of the few vendors to actually do so.
His next venture was the Inside Inn, built for the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition in St. Louis, Missouri. Another temporary wooden structure, it was the world's largest hotel with 2257 rooms. A grand success, the hotel made Statler a net profit of $361,000 and laid the groundwork for his first permanent hotel. The hotel was then sold for scrap and dismantled.
The first Statler hotel was designed by August Esenwein and James A. Johnson (architect) and built in Buffalo, New York and offered 300 rooms and bathrooms (it was later expanded to 450 rooms and baths). The hotel was successful and led to a chain of hotels in other cities. Statler's intent was not to compete with the luxury hotels, but rather to provide, clean, comfortable and moderately priced rooms for the average traveler. Statler was the first major hotel chain to have a bathroom in every room. His innovative Statler Plumbing Shaft is still used in modern construction. From providing paper and pens for correspondence (prominently bearing the Statler name) to a light in the closet, Statler brought the average traveler a level of luxury that was otherwise unaffordable.
Statler Hotel on Niagara Square
Rooms were originally available at what seemed a very cheap price, leading many other hoteliers to predict the failure of the Buffalo hotel. The opening night price was as low as $1.50 for a guest room, leading to the slogan "A Room and a Bath for a Dollar and a Half." The hotel had a $500,000 line of credit available, but was so successful that Statler never used the line of credit.
Text from Wikipedia
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