It began in 1790, when the Stephen Van Rensselaer family paid a meager five schillings for several acres of Latham, NY property.
The land extended to Cohoes Falls and was soon rented to the Frederic Roff family at a rate of 25½ Skippels of saleable winter wheat, and four fat fowls to be delivered annually to Mr. Van Rensselaer.
It was a beautiful golden autumn in 1949. America was surging in greatness due to the efforts of "the greatest generation.”
Jim and Dorothy O' Hearn, along with their children and extended family were busy fixing, painting, patching, planting, decorating, and sprucing up the Federal brick estate house from the early 1800's that was to be their new home and business dream - a restaurant.
"You're crazy for trying to put a restaurant out there Jim," said the unbelieving.
But Jim and Dorothy knew that the only way from New York City to Montreal was to travel Route 9 through Upstate New York, right in front of their new restaurant. Jim and Dorothy risked everything to buy this "century old" farmhouse in the middle of nowhere on Albany-Saratoga Road in Latham, New York. Nestled between orchards and farmland with herds of cows for neighbors, the O’Hearn family took a chance on the venture.
Jim, Dorothy, their sons Tim and Kevin and soon-to-follow, daughter Susan, moved in upstairs in the farmhouse and served their guests in their own living and dining rooms — offering a warm, comfortable ambiance with excellent meals and service that made you never want to leave.
From the very first meal, Jim, Dorothy and the family provided more than just an excellent meal at great value, they provided the experience of comfort and care for the body - and soul.
Guests and staff became part of the family, while The Century House became part of the community — a true "Public House" where friends could share a good meal, good company, and celebrate important milestones together.
Through their labor of love, the family grew the oasis to include larger dining rooms, banquet facilities, and ultimately the hotel and conference center with a pool, garden court, wonderful half-mile nature trail to top off the exceptional service from which the family business made its name.
The Century House is still family-owned and operated. Jim and Dorothy have passed on now, and the stewardship has continued, with son Tim and daughter Susan spearheading the operation of the business, along with Jim and Dorothy's nephew Colin DeMers, who became Managing Partner in 1999.
In June of 2009, The Century House solidified its commitment to our community by developing the Enjoy One, Share One program whereby a meal is provided in each guest’s honor to those in need through the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York. This accounts for every restaurant meal ordered or hotel room reserved.
The Century House continues to treat each guest or client like family. The owners prioritize making their house feel like home by supplying guests with an experience they can’t wait to share.
The hotel is also dedicated to the service and commitment of Jim and Dorothy O' Hearn. This is accomplished by presenting the products and services normally associated with the hotel — such as guest rooms, weddings, meeting rooms, banquets, contemporary amenities, and dinner, in a blanket of sincere and genuine caring.
Providing our friends and guests with the experience of comfort and care to the body and soul in a relaxed, comfortable yet historical setting.
Since 1949 almost every local, as well as tens of thousands of travelers have had the experience of a touching The Century House story, fond memories of sharing meals with loved ones, beautiful wedding days, being cared for, special birthday get togethers, milestone anniversaries, and the celebration of lives.
We look forward to serving you, providing your Century Experience, helping create your story and making the world a better place!