The storied Hotel Chelsea is again after a harrowing, eleven-year hiatus — and it’s for actual, this time, after repeated failures to stay as much as reopening predictions.
After years of widely-reported intrigue and uncertainty, the fabled former haunt of Andy Warhol, Jack Kerouac and scores of New York artists, filmmakers, musicians and all stripes of zany characters quietly checked again on this month.
Behind a large number of black development nets, the Chelsea is already taking bookings for 2 flooring of visitor rooms — which we found once we popped into the atmospheric foyer that’s hidden beneath a sidewalk development bridge.
The digs are supplied at discount charges for now. The lodge’s Web website says: “As Hotel Chelsea emerges from rehab, we are offering a few rooms at ‘hard hat’ rates to guests willing to tolerate a little construction.” The project remains to be very a lot a work-in-progress, its red-brick facade obscured behind netting.
The venue will absolutely reopen late this summer time with 155 restored visitor rooms, in keeping with the property’s representatives. They had reached out to us to tout the reopening of romantic Spanish restaurant El Quijote, which was darkish for 4 years.
The eatery quietly reopened a number of weeks in the past. Now run by Brooklyn-based Sunday Hospitality and companion Charles Seich, it’s smaller than the unique, however simply as atmospheric with restored Cervantes-themed murals and pink leather-based cubicles — and significantly better meals than earlier than.
Few different particulars concerning the lodge’s full reopening have been out there. A foyer attendant mentioned, “We’re shooting for September.”
But it’s information sufficient that the homeowners, BD Hotels companions Richard Born, Ira Drukier and Sean Macpherson, made good on their six-years-long quest to carry the 12-story landmark again to life as a luxurious boutique lodge with apartment items.
The trio purchased the money-hemorrhaging Chelsea — which the Wall Street Journal termed a “Wall Street money pit” — for $250 million in 2016. Previous homeowners included at completely different instances actual property mogul Joseph Chetrit and Pershing Square Capital billionaire Bill Ackman.
The new workforce persevered via a tangle of lawsuits, a dispute with the town’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development and repeated development delays.
Some of the 50-odd residential tenants who had rent-stabilized leases sued the homeowners over alleged harassment — leading to Department of Buildings stop-work orders that additional slowed issues down.
The funky Chelsea was residence over the many years to the likes of Arthur C. Clarke, who wrote “2001: A Space Odyssey” whereas residing there, Mark Twain, poets Dylan Thomas and Allen Ginsberg and jazz musicians Chet Baker and Chick Corea.
Andy Warhol made movies on the Chelsea with actress Viva amongst others of his “superstars” who referred to as the place residence. Madonna, who lived there within the early Nineteen Eighties, returned to shoot photographs for her guide “Sex” in 1992.
In maybe essentially the most infamous episode, Nancy Spungen, girlfriend of Sex Pistols’ frontman Sid Vicious, was stabbed to loss of life there in 1978.
The Chelsea was lengthy managed by Stanley Bard, an eccentric determine whom the New York Times described on his loss of life in 2017 as a “Robin Hood of innkeepers” for his penchant for under-charging residents he preferred — if he charged them in any respect.
Now the Chelsea is ultimately in secure palms. BD operates two dozen properties within the metropolis together with the Maritime, Jane and Bowery inns.