George Washington Hotel (New York City)

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Lexington Avenue

The George Washington Hotel was a hotel and boarding house located at 23 Lexington Avenue in New York City. The building was occupied by many famous writers, musicians, and poets including W. H. Auden and Christopher Isherwood who lived there in the 1930s, or Keith Haring who lived in the building as a student at the School of Visual Arts.

In the late 1960s, Minoru Yamasaki and a team of architects drafted the early plans for the World Trade Center in a suite at the George Washington. From 1975 until his death in 1979 Al Hodge, who played Captain Video in the popular children's 1950s TV series, lived in an inexpensive rental unit in the hotel. In the 1990s Dee Dee Ramone occupied a room there, as did playwright Jeffrey Stanley.

The George Washington Hotel in New York City's Gramercy Park District was opened in 1928. At different times it has been used both as a brothel and as a boot-legging house during Prohibition. In 1939 the poet W. H. Auden stayed at the hotel, calling it "the nicest hotel in town", another famous resident was writer Christopher Isherwood. In the 1980s, the hotel was raided by the police.[1] For a period of time the building was in receivership; its demolition was prevented by support from a local historical society. The hotel was later purchased at auction, and space was leased to not-for-profit Educational Housing Services[1] in the mid-90s during the city's rebirth. Much of the space was under sublease to the School of Visual Arts except for apartments still occupied by original (non-student) tenants who pay stabilized rent, and who are still protected under NYC rent laws. SVA broke sublease and built a new dorm on 24th street in mid 2016. The ground lease for the property was bought by investment firm Alliance Bernstein in 2016. The company developed the property into a hotel[2] which is now known as the Freehand/New York.[3][4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "7 Seized in Drug Raid At Hotel on East Side" New York Times Published: March 29, 1983 Retrieved 7 July 2010
  2. ^ E.B. Solomont, E.B. (July 18, 2016). "AllianceBernstein pays $100.4M for George Washington Hotel's ground lease". The Real Deal. Retrieved July 22, 2018. 
  3. ^ "Freehand/New York". Freehand Hotels. Retrieved July 22, 2018. 
  4. ^ Marsh, Julia; Rosner, Elizabeth (March 27, 2018). "Owners of famed Manhattan hotel want rent-stabilized 'hoarders' out". New York Post. Retrieved July 22, 2018. 

Coordinates: 40°44′23″N 73°59′05″W / 40.739627°N 73.984647°W / 40.739627; -73.984647