The Roosevelt Hotel (Manhattan)

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The Roosevelt Hotel
Roosevelt Hotel.jpg
The Roosevelt Hotel
General information
LocationManhattan, New York City
Address45 East 45th Street
Coordinates40°45′17″N 73°58′39″W / 40.75472°N 73.97750°W / 40.75472; -73.97750Coordinates: 40°45′17″N 73°58′39″W / 40.75472°N 73.97750°W / 40.75472; -73.97750
Opening1924
OwnerPakistan International Airlines[1]
ManagementInterstate Hotels & Resorts
Design and construction
ArchitectGeorge B. Post & Son
Other information
Number of rooms1,015
Number of suites52
Website
Official website
The Roosevelt Hotel entrance
The Roosevelt Hotel building

The Roosevelt Hotel is a historic luxury hotel, located at 45 East 45th Street (and Madison Avenue) in Midtown Manhattan. The hotel, named in honor of President Theodore Roosevelt, opened on September 22, 1924.[2] The hotel later closed in 1995 and reopened again in 1997 after an extensive $65 million renovation.

Description[edit]

There are a total of 1,015 rooms in the hotel, including 52 suites. The 3,900-square-foot (360 m2) Presidential Suite has four bedrooms, a kitchen, formal living and dining areas, and a wrap-around terrace. The rooms are traditionally decorated, with mahogany wood furniture and light-colored bed coverings.

There are several eateries within the hotel. They include:

  • The "Roosevelt Grill", which serves American food and regional specialties for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • The "Madison Club Lounge", a bar and lounge which has a 30-foot (9.1 m) mahogany bar and features stained glass windows and a pair of fireplaces.
  • "Vander Bar"[3]

The Roosevelt has 30,000 square feet (2,800 m2) of meeting and exhibit space, including two ballrooms and 17 additional meeting rooms ranging in size from 300 to 1,100 square feet (28 to 102 m2). It offers a business center. Other services include a concierge, fitness center, safety deposit boxes, valet laundry, valet or self-parking, and 15 retail tenants.[4]

History[edit]

The Roosevelt hotel, opened on September 23, 1924, was built by Niagara Falls businessman Frank A. Dudley and operated by the United Hotels Company.[2] The hotel was designed by the architecture firm George B. Post & Son, and leased from The New York State Realty and Terminal Company, a division of the New York Central Railroad. The hotel, built at a cost of $12,000,000[2] (equivalent to $171,635,000 in 2017), was the first to incorporate store fronts instead of lounges in its sidewalk facades due to the Prohibition era. The Roosevelt Hotel was at one time linked with Grand Central Terminal by way of an underground passage that connected the hotel to the train terminal. The Roosevelt housed the first guest pet facility and child care service in The Teddy Bear Room and had the first in-house doctor.

Conrad Hilton purchased the Roosevelt in 1943 calling her "a fine hotel with grand spaces" and even though he eventually owned many other hotels in New York, including The Plaza and The Waldorf Astoria, he chose the Roosevelt's Presidential Suite as his home. In 1947, the Roosevelt became the first hotel to have a television set in every room.

Beginning in 1979, the hotel was leased by the Pakistan International Airlines through its investment arm PIA Investments Ltd. ("PIA"), with an option to purchase the building after 20 years. Prince Faisal bin Khalid bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia was one of the investors in the 1979 deal.[5] In 1999, PIA exercised their option and bought the hotel for $36.5 million, after a legal battle with owner Paul Milstein, who claimed it was worth much more.[6] In 2005, PIA bought out its Saudi partner in a deal that included the prince's share in Hôtel Scribe in Paris in exchange for $40 million and PIA's share of the Riyadh Minhal Hotel (a Holiday Inn located on property owned by the prince).[4] PIA has since controlled 99 percent interest in the hotel, while the Saudis have only 1 percent.

In July 2007, after a major $65 million (equivalent to $76,840,000 in 2017) renovation, PIA announced that it was putting the hotel up for sale.[7] The increasing profitability of the hotel, at the same time as the airline itself started to incur massive losses, resulted in the sale being abandoned.[8] On January 1, 2011 The Roosevelt Hotel's General Manager stated the hotel is once again undergoing extensive renovations but will remain open during the process.

Notable events[edit]

Guy Lombardo began leading the house band of the Roosevelt Grill in 1929; it was here that Lombardo also began holding an annual New Year's Eve radio broadcast with his band The Royal Canadians.[9][10][11]

Lawrence Welk began his career at the Roosevelt Hotel in the summers while Lombardo took his music to Long Island. Music was piped live into each room via radio. Hugo Gernsback (of Hugo Award fame) started WRNY from a room on the 18th floor of The Roosevelt broadcasting live via a 125-foot tower on the roof.

From 1943 to 1955 the Roosevelt Hotel served as the New York City office and residence of Governor Thomas E. Dewey. Dewey's primary residence was his farm in Pawling, in Upstate New York, but he used Suite 1527 in the Roosevelt to conduct most of his official business in the city. In the famous 1948 presidential election, Dewey, his family, and staff listened to the election returns in Suite 1527 of the Roosevelt; in the election Dewey lost to incumbent President Harry Truman in one of the greatest political upsets in American history.

Though the civil rights act of 1964 banned discrimination in public accommodations, the Men's Grill at the Roosevelt refused to admit women until a New York City law was passed in 1970. The law prohibited banning women by places that were "sexegrated" on the grounds that, though they welcomed the public, they were private clubs.

In popular culture[edit]

Film:

Music:

Television:

  • In Season 2 of Mad Men, Don Draper lives at The Roosevelt Hotel for multiple episodes while he is having marital troubles, though all scenes were shot in Los Angeles.
  • In the opening credits for Travel Channel's Hotel Impossible, host Anthony Melchiorri can be seen standing in the lobby of the Roosevelt Hotel. However, it was never featured as a struggling hotel in any episode. The opening credits give "special thanks" to the Roosevelt.[12]
  • In season 1, episode 6 of HBO's The Leftovers, Nora attends a conference in New York City where she is to be a panelist. Her ID has been stolen and the thief causes trouble for her in the hotel. The lobby, the bar area, the surrounding raised restrooms area and hallway, and even the familiar large square patterned room cushions are on the show.
  • The tenth episode in season 1 of The Punisher sees ex-Army veteran Lewis Wilson attempt to assassinate Karen Page and Senator Stan Ori in the hotel while Karen is interviewing the Senator about his views on gun control, but Frank Castle foils his attempt, while also crossing paths with Billy Russo and Dinah Madani.

Movies:

  • The Hotel is the setting for the 2012 film Man on a Ledge where the main character Nick Cassidy checks into the Roosevelt under the false name of "Walker" and occupies a room on the 21st floor.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Divestment of Roosevelt Hotel ruled out". DAWN.COM. 12 December 2017. Retrieved 12 December 2017.
  2. ^ a b c "Roosevelt Hotel Has Housewarming – Men and Women Prominent in the Citys Activities Attend Opening Dinner". The New York Times. September 23, 1924. p. 13. Retrieved July 30, 2008.
  3. ^ "Vander Bar". theroosevelthotel.com. Retrieved 20 November 2015.
  4. ^ a b Deal on PIAICL assets: PIA now sole owner of Roosevelt, Scribe hotels from the Business Recorder
  5. ^ Bagli, Charles V. "Judge Rules Against Milsteins in Roosevelt Hotel Dispute", The New York Times, June 1, 2000. Accessed July 30, 2008.
  6. ^ Shott, Chris (2013-01-09). "Roosevelt Hotel's Rough Ride Toward Sale Could Be A Lot of Bull Moose". Observer. Retrieved 2013-02-02.
  7. ^ Weiss, Lois. "Roosevelt's up for sale at cool $1b", New York Post, July 11, 2007. Accessed July 30, 2008.
  8. ^ Shott, Chris (December 18, 2007). "Roosevelt Hotel's Rough Ride Toward Sale Could Be a Lot of Bull Moose". The New York Observer. Retrieved November 1, 2010.
  9. ^ Wilson, John S. "While Guy Lombardo Rims Out the Old…". The New York Times. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  10. ^ Lynch, Stephen (31 December 1999). "New Year's song remains ingrained in public mind". The Orange County Register. Archived from the original on 26 April 2005.
  11. ^ Moore, Frazier (26 December 2001). "Next week to be 25th New Year's Eve without Guy Lombardo". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Associated Press. Retrieved 1 January 2007.
  12. ^ [1] "Company Credits for 'Hotel Impossible'" from Internet Movie Database accessdate=2012-09-19

External links[edit]

Preceded by
New York Hilton Midtown
Venues of the
NFL Draft

19761978
Succeeded by
Waldorf Astoria New York