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Niles Hotel

Hotel or Motel
The Niles Hotel before it was renovated. – Lorissa Soriano

Since 1908, the historic Niles Hotel has welcomed travelers from all over the world. It is one of Modoc County’s oldest and most renowned establishments. The original construction of the hotel began in 1904 under the name of the Curtis Hotel. The project had already been underway when J.E. Niles purchased the building. In 1912, J.E. Niles completed the hotel and named it after himself calling it the Niles Hotel.

Located in downtown Alturas, this beautiful old hotel is a hidden treasure full of priceless memories of times past. The aura and energy that emits in this place is indescribable. Some feel that the spirits who once lived here, loved it so much they never wanted to leave. People have even seen these apparitions wandering about the halls in the upper floors of the hotel.

Currently, the Niles Coffee Company, Niles Saloon and J.E. Niles event room are open, and guests are invited to stop in and see the progress to date on the remodeling of the hotel. By early summer 2012, the High Grade Dinning Room will be open, and some of the rooms on the 2nd floor will be available to rent.

For nearly a century this hotel has been one of the main focal points in Modoc County. It has served as a social gathering place for generations of families who settled here. Many backroom business deals took place here as well as high stakes poker games.The hotel catered to cattlemen, railroad workers, loggers, miners, etc., as well as to visitors passing through town. Even celebrities made this a stop while visiting here. Tennessee Ernie Ford, was one who back in the old rodeo days would make it a point to stop at this drinking hole after the rodeo. Erik Estrada is another. I actually met both of the gentlemen here.

Throughout the years the hotel has seen its share of proprietors who all held a common vision of bringing the hotel back to life. Unfortunately, due to economic disparities, many were unable to handle the upkeep and the hotel started to deteriorate.

Recently, Jim and Elizabeth Cavasso of the Cavasso Corporation, a local couple who have lived most of their lives in Modoc, made a decision to purchase the hotel. They, like everyone else in the county, hated to see the hotel fall apart, not to mention having that area of downtown blighted by the deterioration of the hotel. Jim, Elizabeth, Cavasso family members and many other volunteers have worked endlessly to renovate this iconic place and bring it back to what it once was.

In the past, the historic Niles Hotel offered its guests a unique lodging experience in faithfully restored guest and meeting rooms, amid an atmosphere of antiques and memorabilia dating back to the 1800s. It was a step into the past, when personal service was expected by guests and provided by hoteliers as a matter of course, a tradition that will be continued from this day on at the Niles.

This is an awesome old hotel, "a must see" if you plan to visit the area. The history that exists in this nearly a century old hotel, bar and restaurant is something that cannot be created in a new look-alike building.

The Niles Hotel remains, as always, a perfect rose in Modoc County--Garden of Eden, the gateway to the magnificent Warner Mountains, the land the Natives call "The Smiles of God", and where the west still lives. Everybody here is proud of it.

Other places to visit in Modoc County include antique shops, espresso bars, the Modoc County Historical Museum, art galleries, quilt auctions, arts and crafts shows, casinos, theaters, movie cinemas, concerts and special events. Ourdoor enthusiasts can explore Lava Beds National Monument, Modoc National Forest, birding in Modoc National Wildlife Refuge, and endless miles for biking, hiking, swimming, kayaking, fishing, mountaineering, hang gliding, hunting, golfing, camping, horseback riding, and skiing, snowmobiling, ice skating and sledding in the winter.

Locally or Family Owned Business Notes

"The Niles" is a century old hotel in Alturas, California that was purchased by Jim and Elizabeth Cavasso, mid August 2011.

Lodging Style and Amenities

Renovations on the main floor include the Niles Coffee Company, Niles Saloon and J.E. Niles event room, gift shop, the kitchen and eventually the High Grade Room-Steak House. Hotel rooms on the second floor are being remodeled and will be open Spring 2012.

Pet Friendly Notes

No pets please.


Season Open

Year rounding


  • Eco-Friendly
  • Locally or Family-Owned Business

Nearby Places