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New Yorker Hotel | by Michael McDonough
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New Yorker Hotel

*The 43-storey New Yorker Hotel was built in 1929 and opened its doors on January 2, 1930. Much like its contemporaries, the Empire State Building (opened in 1931) and the Chrysler Building (opened in 1930), the New Yorker is designed in the Art Deco style that was popular in the 1920s and 1930s. The building's pyramidal, set-back tower structure largely resembles that of the Empire State Building, which lies just a couple blocks due east on 34th Street. For many years, the New Yorker Hotel was New York's largest hotel.


Throughout the 1940s and 1950s the hotel hosted a number of popular Big Bands while notable figures such as Spencer Tracy, Joan Crawford and even Fidel Castro stayed here. The inventor Nikola Tesla spent the last ten years of his life in near-seclusion in Suite 3327 (where he also died), largely devoting his time to feeding pigeons while occasionally meeting dignitaries. However, by the late 1960s, with both the passing of the Big Band era as well as the construction of more modern hotels, the hotel slowly lost profitability and closed its doors in April 1972.


Different proposals were offered for the use of the building, and in 1975 it was purchased by the Unification Church, who converted the 30th floor into individual apartments for the True Children. Under new management and following extensive renovation, the New Yorker Hotel finally re-opened its doors as a hotel on 1 June 1994. Since 2000 it has been part of the Ramada franchise. The hotel is currently undergoing another phase of major renovations as evidenced by a large stuffed Polar Bear holding a sign that reads "Please Bear Wittus".


The New Yorker Hotel is located at the corner of 8th Ave and 34th Street in Midtown Manhattan. It is a fully functioning hotel, featuring spectacular panoramic views of midtown Manhattan from its 39th floor dining lounge. Diners get a sweeping view of landmarks such as the Chrysler Building to the north, the Empire State Building and One Penn Plaza, due east, and lower Manhattan, due south. It is in proximity to Madison Square Garden, Penn Station, Macy's and the Jacob Javits Convention Center. Visitors can come by bus, arriving at the Port Authority Bus Terminal, just a few blocks north on 8th Avenue, or by train, as Penn Station is across the street.


The New Yorker Hotel also featured pro wrestling from the Ring of Honor promotion, featuring one of pro-wrestling's most famous matches, Kenta Kobashi (representing Pro Wrestling NOAH from Japan) facing Samoa Joe (representing Ring of Honor) in the Grand Ballroom on October 1, 2005. They would hold their final New Yorker show on June 17, 2006.



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Taken on August 6, 2006