Since the old SRO Hotel Breslin reopened as the jazzed-up and hipsterfied Ace Hotel, the feisty back-and-forth between leftover rent-stabilized tenants and hotel management has been quiet. Too quiet. Like, eye-of-the-storm quiet. Consider this period of calm over. Sheila McClear checks in on the star of the city's new boutique district for Chelsea Now, and uncovers this little ditty: The rent-stabilized tenants are not allowed in the lobby. Or so tenants claim. While this isn't a surprise?we previously examined the under-renovation "tenants' entrance" on Broadway (basically the hotel's service entrance, above)?there is a bit of a twist. Tenants are allowed in the hotel's "living room" as long as they break out their billfolds.
Regarding the holdout tenants not being allowed through the Ace lobby, [Ace owner Alex Calderwood] said it's "not exactly true" that the permanent residents have been told to use a separate entrance. "I've certainly seen them in the lobby," Calderwood added, noting that the tenants had their own 'newly renovated' entrance—the same dusty, under-construction space just off the main lobby. However, Ace manager Jan Rozenveld explained that tenants have indeed been asked to stay out of the main lobby.
"What we've been saying is that if you don't consume anything in the lobby," like a drink from the bar or a cup of coffee from Stumptown, "we ask you to not be in the lobby," he said. Rozenveld added, though, that "relations with tenants have really improved over the last couple months. We want to make them part of our guests, just like everybody else."
Got that, stabies? No freebies! And have relations really improved? McClear adds that the hotel is still trying to lump the Breslin tenants together, but the old folks have resisted switching apartments out of fear of losing their tenancy rights. Which leads to amusing situations such as this: "A woman living on the eighth floor who cooks often received complaints from guests about the scents permeating the hallway, so the hotel gave them a discount." Maybe the Ace could market home-cooked meals as a hotel perk?
· Breslin holdovers feeling Aced out by hipster hotel [Chelsea Now]
· Ace Hotel coverage [Curbed]