2006_1_thedrake1.jpgBad news for East Side hotel lovers: The Drake (56th and Park) and the Mark (77th and Madison) are both closing! The Drake is going to be demolished to make room for a high-rise residential building. The Mark is also going residential, but the building won't be destroyed. The Post has the financial details:

Recently, the Mandarin Oriental International Ltd. agreed to sell its full leasehold at The Mark hotel, on East 77th Street between Madison and Fifth avenues, for $150 million for cooperative apartments.

The 176-room facility is bringing in about $850,000 a room. "That's just too good a price to pass up," said one broker.

The buyers are a group controlled by New York developers Izak Senbahar and Simon Elias. The Mark was bought by the Mandarin Group in 2000 as part of a $142.5 million acquisition.

At this rate, we predict than in 2010 there will only be three hotels left in Manhattan, and they will be so expensive that only the five richest kings of Europe will be able to afford a room. And even then, it'll be a small room facing a brick wall! Some of you entrepreneurial types should probably begin stocking up on air mattresses so you can open up your "boutique hotel" in your "one-bedroom" apartment in Williamsburg.