Yesterday we were invited to the Hotel Chelsea to check out an art show (more photos and commentary on that later this week), and while there tried to get a closer look at the current state of things outside of the one room we were invited to. The landmarked hotel has been undergoing changes that no one seems to support (no one that doesn't currently have stake in it)—residents have been practically forced out, rooms have been gutted, and a rooftop bar may soon be coming to the gorgeous oasis above 23rd Street, which is still home to a handful of people. (Yes, people live on the roof.)
Click through for what our photographer Sam Horine saw while inside—he tells us, "the vibe was depressing—very dark and dusty in the hallways... all the doors had plastic over them to keep out the dust. You could tell that the management had just quit doing anything for the long term residents a long time ago in an effort to encourage them to leave." A security guard came along soon after and told him he could only go to the one room that he signed in to visit, and escorted him back there.
For a look at what the hotel looked like in 2007, just as things were about to change, check out our guided tour with Stanley Bard, who managed the place and helped build the community there for decades. And here's some new video—courtesy of Arthur Nash—of the rooftop's current state, showing both the tentant's gardens, and the area where the new owners would like to build out a bar/lounge.