Guardians of Treasure

You’ll find them everywhere at The Brown. With the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle, Griffins are all around the hotel – in our logo, on the elevators, in the wallpaper.

Visitors sometimes assume they’re from the Brown family crest, as griffins are often used in heraldic emblems. But hotel founder Henry C. Brown was orphaned very young, and his middle-class Ohio family was not the sort to have a crest.

In mythology, griffins are the guardians of mountain gold treasure. When The Brown Palace debuted in 1892, Colorado was rife with golden treasure mined in the Rocky Mountains. Many of the early patrons, who owed their fortunes to mountain gold, probably appreciated seeing the mythological guardians on duty throughout the hotel premises.

Griffins are featured prominently on the hotel’s Millennium Clock behind the Front Desk. Though it appears to be antique, the clock actually dates to New Year’s Eve 1999/2000.

The custom creation, based upon The Brown’s griffin logo, was designed by sculptor Robert Shure. Electric Time of Medfield, Massachusetts, also produced a limited number of miniature replica clocks, signed by the artist, which were presented to guests who attended The Brown’s Millennial New Year’s Eve celebration.

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