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Controversial Village Hotel Switches Out Hot Karl for Gene Kaufman

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Back in 2008, 52-54 West 13th Street was slated to become a big and glassy 16-story hotel from architect Karl Fischer, to the despair of neighbors who wanted to save a shorter eighteenth-century building nearby. How much things...change? Two years later, foundation work is finally beginning, and the project has a new architect: the equally-reviled Gene Kaufman. We haven't been able to dig up a rendering of his design, but the Wall Street Journal describes it as an 18-story, 113-room hotel with a "brownstone-style facade of red brick, limestone, and iron Juliette balconies. The interior will feature wood and tile to mimic Greenwich Village styles." We're sure those extra two stories will thrill the neighbors! The Gem Hotel Union Square will be the chain's fourth in Manhttan. Anyone have renderings? Send 'em our way.

That was fast! Here she is:

· In Tight Hotel Market, Gemini Builds Flagship [WSJ]
· 52-54 West 13th Street coverage [Curbed]