Thursday, September 6, 2012


I invite you to step back into a bygone era when grand sweeps of architectural splendor made hotels the quintessence of elegant living. Such is one fine Victorian lady, The Hotel Wolcott. Skirted with grace and brimming with old-world charm, this hotel takes its place with pride as one of the unique treasures in the Murray Hill section of New York City. In the 1850’s when the Victorian swells moved up from downtown Old New York, they chose Fifth Avenue and so did the Hotel Wolcott at Thirty-first Street and Fifth Ave. The historical value of this hotel deserves to be recognized for the hotel fortunately has been restored with modern amenities so that travelers may be able to stay in a luxurious environment like the cognoscenti of yesteryear's.
SOME HISTORICAL ACCOUNT The impressive interior and exterior of the hotel, with gold cherubs caressing the sweeping staircase inside was the work of American architect, John H.Duncan, who counts among his achievements as the architect of Grant’s Tomb and also the Soldiers’ and Sailor’s memorial Arch in Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn, NY. The 1904-built hotel was named after a brother of the ex-Senator of Colorado and the current steward, is Scott Erlich, whose family has owned the hotel since 1975 and has carefully restored the structure with a great sensitivity towards authenticating the original plan.
A GRAND BUILDING “If only we looked this good at one hundred years old!” is an appropriate statement when it comes to describing this beautiful Manhattan hotel. Like the grand lady, that she is, the building still maintains the structure’s original architectural details. The lobby is restored in perfect detail with gorgeous crystal chandeliers, marble columns and ceiling colors that match the magnificent period-looking carpet, as pictured in the image above.  Keeping up appearances, so to speak, the hotels warm service also harkens back to a long-past era of hospitality.
MODERN AMENITIES Each of the 200 private rooms have modern amenities like TV and Internet access, but tempting sights nearby beckon as well. Close by is the famous Empire State Building, Madison Square Park and the Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church. Downtown past Twenty-third Street there are lots of trendy restaurants and a quick hop on the Madison Avenue bus and you are whisked up to Museums along the route such as MOMA and the Whitney or the Metropolitan. Cross town on 34th Street you can hop the Select Bus to the Javits Center.
A LADY AUTHOR As for me I think I would find the ambiance of the hotel so inspiring that I would sit right down and write a romantic novel there. That’s what America’s most beloved writer Edith Wharton did in 1907, she penned the book, “The Fruit of the Tree,” and I cannot wait to read it. Surely in the past discreet ladies on the town found the hotel’s warm and elegant ambiance to their liking as do the ladies and business women today who might find it likewise an appropriate home away from home.
FAMOUS GUESTS Recalling the hotel’s heyday, Titanic survivors took refuge there as did important businessmen. Musicians including Buddy Holly and Everly brothers were guests as were numerous other celebrities even including Fiorella H. LaGuardia and his family. Nonetheless, the Wolcott has come full circle and today it’s a destination place attracting fashionistas and travelers, not only because it is such a living treasure, but with all of its historical ambiance, the Wolcott, my dears, is quite affordable.

THE WOLCOTT HOTEL, 4 East 31st St., Between Fifth Avenue and Broadway. Tel: 212.268.2900

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Polly Guerin is an author/poet with four textbooks and 2 video productions as credentials as well as 4 books ready to be published. All my blogs are intended to become the basis for books to be published. PollyTalk From New York (c) is a current events blog about happenings in New York City. I have been PollyTalk columnist on the Internet, Big Apple News Network. AmazingArtDecoDivas blog features amazing women of notable character. I am on the board of the Art Deco Society of New York. The Fashion Historian blog gives pertinent insight into Polly's consummate knowledge about fashion history. Former professor at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Awaken Your Sleeping Beauty blog gives you pertinent information about holistic remedies for health, beauty, mind, body and spirit. I am on the board of the Edgar Cayce New York Center. I sing with the St. George's Choral Society and also serve on their Board. My little dog Colby is a rescue dog and I support animal charities. I hope you enjoy my blogs, please keep in touch.