First look at the iconic Hotel Chelsea’s glamorous interior renovation
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First look at the iconic Hotel Chelsea’s glamorous interior renovation

April 3, 2017

Update 4/4/2017: 6sqft has been informed that Kara Mann’s design will likely not move forward because of changes with the development team. We will provide additional updates as we receive them.

While there’s no shortage of hotels to visit in New York City, some are more worthy of the trip than others, and the restored Hotel Chelsea will certainly be one of them when it reopens in 2018. The renovation of this famous hotel—known since the 1960s as a haven for artists, writers, and musicians, housing famous tenants including Bob Dylan, Stanley Kubrick, Jasper Johns, Patty Smith, Dylan Thomas and Leonard Cohen—has been in the works since 2011, with lots of drama, ultimately finding some direction following a $250M purchase by Richard Born and Ira Drukier of BD Hotels and hotelier Sean MacPherson, last year. Following the sale, the new owners announced they would redevelop the property as a hotel and condos, departing from previous plans of simply converting the structure into a high-end hotel. Now, with its re-opening just around the corner, the first few images of the glamorous new interiors designed by Kara Mann have emerged.

Kara Mann Design, chelsea hotel

In what appears to be several model units, each suite has its own unique layout and interior details, however dark earth tones combined with luxury textures and fabrics are consistent throughout the property. The room designs are reflective of Mann’s background in fashion and art and harken to the building’s past. The architect of record on the project is Marvel Architects.

Kara Mann Design, chelsea hotel

Kara Mann Design, chelsea hotel

Kara Mann Design, chelsea hotel

Kara Mann Design, chelsea hotel

As 6sqft reported in November, BD Hotels and MacPherson have made plans to build 25,000 square feet of condos across the building along with a hotel component, though the exact layout and pricing are still said to be in the works. What has, however, been in constant discussion is how to deal with the dozens of rent-stabilized apartments in the hotel. As it stands, state law protects rent-stabilized tenants from eviction, further allowing them to hand down their apartments to a family member so long as that successor has been a resident in the apartment for at least two years before the tenant leaves or dies. Currently, there are a number of rent-stabilized families in residence with young or adult children who would benefit from the law.

While past developers have been keen to kick these tenants out, BD has expressed a willingness to work with existing residents and say they would like to maintain some of these apartments as they are. A notable example includes the legally-bound preservation of the unit once inhabited by poet Dylan Thomas (currently occupied by long-term resident Arthur Nash) in its current state.

the chelsea hotel

“We believe that we’ve made peace with virtually every tenant. There are maybe two or three tenants who are still having issues,” BD Hotels’ Richard Born told The Real Deal in November. “We’re dealing with a monumental city landmark. We have gone through [and] caused as little inconvenience as possible.”

Interior images courtesy of Kara Mann Designs


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All information furnished regarding property for sale, rental or financing is from sources deemed reliable, but no warranty or representation is made as to the accuracy thereof and same is submitted subject to errors, omissions, change of price, rental or other conditions, prior sale, lease or financing or withdrawal without notice. All dimensions are approximate. For exact dimensions, you must hire your own architect or engineer and for no listing shall the number of bedrooms listed be considered a legal conclusion.

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