Hotel Chelsea, a onetime bohemian enclave of its namesake neighborhood, has sold to a group of hoteliers for $250 million. Richard Born and Ira Drukier of BD Hotels, along with hotelier and frequent collaborator Sean MacPherson of Jane Hotel and Bowery Hotel fame, have taken control of the ailing West 23rd Street building, The Real Deal reports.
The sale is the latest development in the multi-year saga of the building’s redevelopment into a luxury hotel. Under the new owners’ plan, the building will be redeveloped into a hotel with condominiums. It departs from the vision of previous owners who sought to convert the storied space once home to celebrities like Bob Dylan, Leonard Bernstein, Dylan Thomas and Janis Joplin into solely a high-end hotel.
BD Hotels took over ownership this summer after acquiring a managing interest from Ed Scheetz, a minority owner alongside billionaire Bill Ackman, one faction responsible for NYC’s priciest condo. Moving forward, BD Hotels will manage Hotel Chelsea.
In July, a longtime Hotel Chelsea resident came to an agreement with Drukier to preserve the footprint of the apartment he occupies—once the home of poet Dylan Thomas. "Drukier certainly deserves acknowledgement for having the foresight to realize preserving Thomas's association with the hotel is something good for The Chelsea," Arthur Nash told Curbed in July, "It's easy to begrudge the future, mostly because it so often sacrifices our past. Drukier knows there's room enough for both."
If anything, Drukier and BD Hotels’s willingness to work with Nash and longtime building residents is a positive development amid the many sour notes that have touched the hotel in years past.